What will dentures feel like?
Will dentures make me look different?
Will I be able to eat with my dentures?
Will dentures change how I speak?
Are all dentures alike?
What are conventional vs. immediate dentures?
What is an overdenture?
How long do dentures last?
Can I replace the lower or upper denture only?
Will a reline make my dentures as good as new?
Should relined dentures still fit loosely?
Will my dentures need to be replaced

Q: What will dentures feel like?

A: New dentures may feel awkward for a few weeks until you become accustomed to them. The dentures may feel loose while the muscles of your cheek and tongue learn to keep them in place. It is not unusual to experience minor irritation or soreness. You may find that saliva flow temporarily increases. As your mouth becomes accustomed to the dentures, these problems should diminish. One or more follow-up appointments are generally needed after a denture is inserted. If any problem persists, particularly irritation or soreness, be sure to call.

Q: Will dentures make me look different?

A: Dentures can be made to closely resemble your natural teeth so that little change in appearance will be noticeable. Dentures may even improve the look of your smile and help fill out the appearance of your face and profile. Regular professional examinations and following your dentist's instructions on home care are essential steps in insuring a natural appearance.

Q: Will I be able to eat with my dentures?

A: While not all denture wearers can eat everything they would like, many have very few restrictions in their diet. Eating will take a little practice. Stay with soft foods cut into small pieces. Chew slowly using both sides of your mouth at the same time to prevent the dentures from tipping. As you become accustomed to chewing, add other foods until you return to your normal diet. Continue to chew food using both aides of your mouth at the same time. Be cautious with hot or hard foods and sharp-edged bones or shells. If you develop persistent eating or speech problems, have your dentist check the fit of your dentures.

Q: Will dentures change how I speak?

A: Pronouncing certain words may require practice. Reading out loud and repeating troublesome words will help. If your dentures "click" while you're talking, speak more slowly. You may find that your dentures may occasionally slip while you laugh, cough or smile. Reposition your dentures by biting down and swallowing.

Q: Are all dentures alike?

A: Since every person - and therefore every mouth - is different, it is obvious that no two dentures can be alike. A quality denture is handcrafted, meaning that even two dentures made for the same person will not be exactly alike. When a denture is processed, the custom-designed mold for the specific patient is broken in order to remove the new denture and the finishing work is done by hand. Thus, it is impossible to create exactly the same denture more than once. There is also a difference in techniques of denture construction and quality of materials available today. You should discuss this with your dentist as these variables can affect the quality and cost of the finished product.

Q: What are conventional dentures vs. immediate dentures?

A: Complete dentures are called "conventional" or "immediate" according to when they are made and when they are inserted into the mouth. Conventional dentures are made and inserted after the remaining teeth are removed and the tissues have healed. Healing may take several months. Immediate dentures are inserted immediately after the removal of all teeth. To make this possible, the dentist takes measurements models of the patient's jaws during a preliminary visit. An advantage of immediate dentures is that the wearer does not have to be without teeth during the healing period. However, bones and gums can shrink over time, especially during the period of healing in the first six months after the removal of teeth. When gums shrink, immediate dentures may require rebasing or relining to fit properly.

Q: What is an overdenture?

A: An overdenture is one that fits over a small number of remaining natural teeth that have been prepared by the dentist. The prepared teeth provide stability and support for the denture. We can determine if an overdenture would be suitable for you when we examine your mouth and remaining teeth.

Q: How long do dentures last?

A: While it is true that dentures are durable, they are not any more permanent than eyeglasses. Dropping them can break a tooth or denture base. No manufacturer of dentures today "guarantees" their products to be unbreakable. Given the right set of circumstances any denture can be broken. Even with conscientious care denture teeth can lose their natural appearance and chewing ability due to chewing, brushing, and age. The way you care for dentures can also alter their fit. Dentures can warp if placed in hot water. If they become dried out they may change shape. With proper periodic care your dentures should remain serviceable for five to seven years.

Q: Can I replace the lower denture or upper denture only?

A: It is always recommended that upper and lower dentures be made as a set for the best results. It is not always possible to make only half a set of dentures. Problems with the lower denture are sometimes due to the design of the upper. Because of the size and structure of the upper mouth, movement and dislodgement of the lower denture can occur if there are certain flaws existing in the upper denture. This should be discussed with your dentist after a thorough oral examination with your current dentures in place.

Q: Will a reline make my dentures as good as new?

A: If your denture teeth are very worn or if the bite relationship of your dentures is not correct, your may experience looseness and/or irritation of your mouth. Relining the denture will not correct these problems. They all relate to the way in which the upper and lower teeth come together. A reline has nothing to do with how the teeth come together. It only corrects fit against the tissues of your mouth. A reline should only be done after a thorough examination to determine that there are not other underlying problems with the dentures.

Q: Should relined dentures still fit loosely?

A: There are many reasons dentures can seem loose. For example, if the teeth don't come together in a balanced bite, you will end up with wobbly dentures while chewing on your food. If the denture is too long in some areas, the mouth muscles will actually move it about while eating or talking. If the denture is too short, the vital areas of the mouth won't get covered, which means the denture won't stay in place. Loose dentures could also be the result of health issues. Ask yourself these questions: "Am I on medication, or have I recently changed medication?"; "Have I suddenly gained or lost weight?; Can my health be improved?"; and "Am I under stress?". Even the amount of bone structure in your mouth and the amount of saliva you produce can be contributing factors.

Q: Will my dentures need to be replaced?

A: Over time, dentures will need to be relined, remade, or rebased due to normal wear. To make a rebased denture, the dentist uses the existing denture teeth and makes a new denture base. Dentures may need to be replaced because a mouth naturally changes with age. Bone and gum ridges can recede or shrink, causing jaws to align differently. Shrinking ridges can cause dentures to fit less securely. Loose dentures can cause health problems including sores and infections. A loose denture also makes chewing more difficult and may change your facial features. It's important to replace worn or poorly-fitting dentures before they cause problems.

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