Dentures are removable false teeth made of acrylic (plastic) or metal. They fit snugly over the gums to replace missing teeth and eliminate potential problems caused by gaps.
Gaps left by missing teeth can cause problems with eating and speech, and teeth either side of the gap may grow into the space at an angle. Sometimes all the teeth need to be removed and replaced.
You may therefore need either:
- Complete dentures (a full dentures set), which replace all your upper or lower teeth
- Partial dentures which replace just one or a few missing teeth
Dentures can help prevent the above problems and, if complete dentures are needed, can improve the appearance of your smile, fill out your face and give you confidence.
How dentures are fitted
A full denture will be fitted if all your upper or lower teeth need to be removed or you are having an old complete denture replaced.
The denture is usually fitted as soon as your teeth are removed, which means you won’t ever be without teeth. The denture fits snugly over your gums and jawbone.
Occasionally, however, your gums may need to heal for several months before dentures can be fitted.
You can see either see a dentist or a qualified clinical dental technician to have your dentures made and fitted:
- Dentists will take measurements and impressions (moulds) of your mouth, then order your full or partial dentures from a dental technician
- Clinical dental technicians will provide a full set of dentures directly without you having to see your dentist (although you should still have regular check-ups with your dentist)
A trial denture will be created from the impressions that are taken of your mouth. The dentist or clinical dental technician will try this in your mouth to assess the fit and for you to assess the appearance. The colour and shape may be adjusted before the final denture is produced.