Post by: Gerarda on 21 Oct 2019

This 6-part series will explore dentures, from what dentures are to what is the alternative to them. Today´s blog will focus on what they are and what types of dentures are available.

Dentures are referred to as a plate or a dental appliance. They are associated with visiting your grandparents and seeing them sitting in a glass by their bedside. Thankfully dentistry has advanced.

There are many types of dentures available and depending on your oral circumstances your dentist, in consultation with you, will decide which denture best suits your needs. Along with many types of dentures there are also many kinds of material used to make them. Whichever type of denture you ultimately receive, it is important to replace your missing teeth as they are an essential component to retaining the shape of your face. Without the support of your teeth the mouth collapses and the lower portion of the face shrinks. A denture suddenly fills out the face as it provides your jaw the height to bring your face back to its normal position.

What are dentures?
Dentures are an appliance used if a patient is missing one, some or all of their teeth. They are usually made of an acrylic base that is colored to make them look like natural gums along with a set of acrylic or porcelain teeth. Metals such as steel and chrome can also be used in the base of dentures, particularly in the upper jaw, but if you want something that is flexible, the material Valplast is used. It is a translucent resin that blends with natural gum color.

Dentures can be taken out of your mouth and put back in. They are commonly referred to as a plate and if you are a first-time wearer it can take some getting used to. While they will not feel like your original teeth, with advancements in dentistry they have come to look perfectly natural and feel very comfortable.

What types of dentures are available?
There are many different types of dentures, conventional full denture, immediate full denture, partial denture, denture on implants and flexible dentures to name just a few. Depending on a number of factors there is a whole range available.

Those factors include:

• The number of missing teeth
• The materials being used
• If the denture will be fixed or removable
• If the denture will be supported by the gum or by implants

Dentures made from acrylic while they are strong, are less durable than some of the alternatives. They can break easily if dropped or if too much pressure is applied while biting. Acrylic is the most affordable type of denture as the material is easier to work with and is less expensive.

Depending on the type of denture you have, that level of comfort can vary. The flexible denture uses soft material which is gentler on the gums, doesn´t have the rigidity of acrylic and is less bulky. This means they are more comfortable to wear and cause fewer difficulties with speech.

Dentures with a metal framework are stronger and more durable than acrylic. Because it is metal, the denture can be made thinner than acrylic, so are comfortable and lightweight.

Thankfully, today one is “spoiled for choice” when it comes to choosing the best denture for you. No longer do you have to see them sitting in a glass by your bedside as there are options.

Next time this blog will explore full dentures and immediate dentures.