Dentures & Partial Dentures in Buffalo, NY
Experienced Dentist Specializing in Dentures, Implants, and Oral Surgery in WNY
Douglas Hamill DDS provides dentures, and other restorative dental services to patients throughout the greater Buffalo area.
Despite our best efforts, we can sometimes lose teeth. Dietary conditions such as hypocalcemia and hypovitaminosis D (calcium and vitamin D deficiencies, respectively) can contribute to malnourishment, a common culprit in partial edentulism, the state of having lost teeth. Irregular brushing with toothpaste, flossing, rinsing with mouthwash, and checkups with a dental care professional can allow teeth to decay and bacteria to infiltrate and infect portions of the mouth. Blunt trauma to the mouth, such as injuries sustained during recreational activities or automotive accidents, easily weakens a tooth’s stability and may result in avulsion, when a tooth is abruptly forced out of the jaw. In each of these cases, when the damage is irreversible, a full or partial denture can allow the mouth to return to normal function.
There are four basic kinds of dentures: full and partial, and fixed and removable. Full dentures are recommended when a patient has multiple missing teeth in either the maxilla (the upper jaw) or the mandible (the lower jaw), while a partial denture is more appropriate for one or two missing teeth, regardless of location. Many patients may prefer a fixed denture, also known as dental implant bridges, which are permanent and are secured either under or against the gum line via implants or crowns. However, the health of the intact teeth is crucial in the decision, and a removable denture is better suited for mouths that are not in optimal condition to receive permanent false teeth.
All four types of dentures have the same benefits to oral health. Chewing hard food and speaking with proper enunciation become increasingly difficult with fewer than the standard 28 or 32 teeth present, and dentures can both relieve the added stress on the remaining teeth and force them to not shift in position. They can prevent the shape of the face from changing following edentulism, providing support to the lips and the cheeks, and play a role in reducing the ever-present threat of gum diseases such as periodontitis.
Dentures comprise replacement teeth that are attached to a metal tray, over which an acrylic designed to mirror the color of your gums is laid. Fixed and removable partial dentures may also include clasps or crowns that are designed to attach to the abutting teeth (the teeth on either side of a gap). An Immediate denture may be inserted into the mouth promptly after the removal of any lingering teeth, allowing for a quick resumption of daily activities, but because the gums can shift or shrink after tooth removal, a conventional denture that will better fit the mouth will have to be designed and inserted once the gums have healed.
To receive dentures, a procedure that may last for one to two months, a dentist must first make an impression of the patient’s mouth. Sample dentures are placed in the mouth in order to determine the specifics—the shape and the color—of the final model. As soon as the conventional denture is designed and manufactured, it is adjusted as needed and ready for the patient to wear.
There is not much pain involved. Soreness can ensue if teeth must be extracted before a patient can be fit for them. If your new teeth create sore spots in your mouth, your dentist will have to relieve the spot that is causing the pain.
Dentures can be inserted during the same day as the removal of the diseased teeth. These are called immediate dentures. However, this kind of denture often must be either relined or replaced as the tissues of the mouth heal and shrink.
If you feel that you may require a denture, the first thing is to schedule a checkup with your dentist. If all your teeth are significantly infected with periodontal disease or extensive decay, you may be a strong candidate. However, teeth can be saved, and we prefer to try to save teeth before we consider replacing them.
How do I care for my dentures?
It is not recommended to brush dentures. Most pharmacies sell over-the-counter solutions that will clean them during an overnight soaking. It is inadvisable to sleep in your denture every night, as the teeth will need to soak in order for plaque and bacteria to be removed. Your oral tissues will also benefit from overnight exposure to air.
Whether you can eat normally depends on the fit of the denture and how much bony ridge exists in your mouth. It is difficult when you are wearing dentures to chew as well as you could with your original teeth. For this reason, we always recommend trying to save the teeth, if at all possible. If your denture becomes loose and you are experiencing difficulty when you are eating or talking, it could be time to reline your denture.
How much do dentures cost?
We try to keep the cost reasonable at our office. We do offer payment plans to help pay for them. Your dental insurance will likely cover part of the cost.
If you have questions about replacing missing teeth, or would like to schedule your regular check-up, please contact our Buffalo dental office and schedule an appointment today.