6 Things to Know About Dentures

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6 Things to Know About Dentures

Dentures are removable replacements for missing teeth that help restore your smile. Whether you've lost teeth due to gum disease, tooth decay or injury, replacing missing teeth will benefit your appearance and your health.

  1. You are not alone! More than 35 million Americans do not have any teeth, and 178 million people in the U.S. are missing at least one tooth. Over 15% of the American population has either full or partial dentures. Today’s dentures are not the dentures on your grandparent’s bedside table. New materials and production methods produce a more durable natural looking product that is lighter, better fitting and more comfortable.
  2. Complete or Partial? Dentures are either complete (to replace all natural teeth) or partial (to replace some natural teeth) and are either immediate (the dentures are made prior to pre-prosthetic surgery and placed immediately after) or delayed until the site has healed. Either method may require a series of adjustments until the desired results are achieved.
  3. What Specialists are Involved? Several different dental disciplines may be involved in the process of getting dentures. Beginning with your General Dentist, you may also see a Prosthodontist and an Oral Maxillofacial Surgeon. A lab will prepare your dentures based on the impressions taken and the specifications they are given.
  4. OMS Role: The Oral Maxillofacial Surgeon (OMS) performs pre-prosthetic surgery to ensure the proper placement of the dentures. This surgery may include tooth extractions as well as preparing the mouth to ensure the best fit for your new dentures. At Great Plains OMS, Dr. Dan and his staff will explain the procedure from start to finish including methods of anesthesia to keep you pain free during the procedure and give you instructions for optimal healing and comfort during your recovery.
  5. Denture Alternatives? Dental implants may be an option for some patients. See Dental Implants 101.
  6. Fun Fact! Dentures have been around since as early as 700 B.C. Most people know that our first president, George Washington had dentures but contrary to popular belief, they were not made out of wood. The four known sets of Washington’s dentures are held by the Dental Museum (an affiliate of The Smithsonian Institute.) They are constructed of gold, hippopotamus ivory, lead, and human and animal teeth! Oh, the progress we've made!

Of course there are many more things to know about dentures. As you discuss your options with your dental care provider ask any questions you have so you can be fully informed and confident in your decision.

If you'd like to discuss pre-prosthetic surgery, or dental implants, call our office for an appointment today.

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