Tooth loss is a common dental problem in the United States, with approximately 40 million individuals missing all teeth. The issue worsens as you advance in age due to the deterioration of the jaw bone. Missing several teeth in your formula can alter your appearance, including the shape of your face. It makes you appear older than your actual age and affects your speech. You may also find it challenging to eat hard foods such as steak or cane. Tooth loss can be a result of an accident or advanced gum disease. Fortunately, your reliable specialist Marvin Taylor DDS can help you optimize your oral health and regain your beautiful smile using dentures. Below is a simple explanation of what dentures are.
What are dentures?
Dentures are synthetic removable replacements used for missing teeth and sometimes surrounding tissues such as gums. They can be designed to replace a few missing teeth or all your teeth. Dentures prevent facial muscles from sagging and make it less challenging to eat, chew, and speak. Dentures may be an option depending on how many teeth you have lost. The following are different primary causes for tooth loss.
- Tooth extraction
- Natural aging
- Periodontal disease
- Jaw injury
- Severe tooth decay
- Poor dental hygiene
Types of dentures
Dentures are available in different types, and the one suitable for you depends on your oral health condition and other factors including lifestyle. Here are the most common types of dentures that your doctor may recommend.
Complete dentures are removable replacements used for patients missing their entire set of teeth. They are tailored to match the shape, size, and color of natural teeth. They improve mastication, meaning a patient can crush and chew foods as usual. However, complete dentures lack anchorage, and for this reason, you may not produce extreme force while chewing. These dentures also have a thick material that covers the palate. Speech impediments such as a lisp are common for patients with complete dentures due to the thickness of the material covering the palate, which unfortunately cannot be thinned. However, some people get the hang of it while others do not. While they play the role of natural teeth, complete dentures do not prevent bone shrinkage. You may need a dental implant to prevent structural deformities in your bone.
Fixed partial dentures
These are irremovable dentures that use existing teeth as abutments. They are an option for patients with one or more missing teeth in a row. However, it would be best to have strong, healthy teeth on both sides of the missing ones. Some of the advantages of fixed partial dentures include:
- They are more grounded or stronger than false teeth.
- Offer a better bite.
- Enhance your appearance.
- Consistent tooth positioning.
While they have multiple benefits, implant-supported dentures have their downsides that include:
- The abutments cannot be replaced.
- Risk of injuries to the dental pulp.
- Patients have a higher risk of decay due to abutments.
- Replacement is more costly than removable dentures.
Other dentures such as removable partial dentures and implant-retained dentures are also used in place of missing teeth. If one or several of your teeth are missing, reserve a session with your dentist today at Dr. Taylors Family Dental Center to obtain a functional, new smile.