Dentures are removable appliances used to replace all of the teeth in a dental arch and can be supported by the gum tissue or dental implants. Today's dentures are natural looking and more comfortable than ever, however there is an adjustment period as they may never feel exactly the same as one's natural teeth.
There are two main types of dentures: standard (full) and partial. Dentures are custom-made in a dental laboratory from impressions taken of your mouth.
Conventional Full Denture
A conventional full denture is placed in your mouth after any remaining teeth are removed and tissues have healed. Healing may take several months, during which time you are without teeth.
Immediate Full Denture
An immediate full denture is inserted immediately after the remaining teeth are removed. While immediate dentures offer the benefit of never having to be without your teeth, they must be relined several months after being inserted. The reason is that the bone supporting the teeth reshapes as it heals, causing the denture to become loose.
With full dentures, a flesh-colored acrylic base fits over your gums. The base of the upper denture covers the palate (the roof of your mouth), while the lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to accommodate your tongue.
A replacement of teeth with a removable prosthesis that can be made of soft flexible materials, acrylic only or acrylic supported on a metal framework. This device is meant to replace one to multiple missing teeth and is attached to a natural tooth.
Your dentist will help you choose the type of denture that's best for you based on the number of teeth being replaced. An alternative to dentures is dental implants.