Dentures

older woman pleased with her dentures

Here at O’Connor Dental Care, we make sure that your dentures fit snugly and comfortably and look as natural and attractive as your own teeth.

What types of dentures can I choose from?

There are two main types of dentures: full and partial. Depending on how many teeth you are missing, our dentists will design a denture customized for you. You may choose from several types of dentures, ranging from conventional full dentures to partial dentures, to the new snap-in dentures that are anchored to implants so they stay fixed in place longer.

How do dentures work?

Dentures are custom-made for each patient using impressions taken of your mouth.

A conventional full denture is crafted from impressions taken after all teeth have been extracted and soft tissues have healed thoroughly. Healing may take several months, and you may be without teeth during this period.

The traditional full denture consists of a flesh-colored acrylic base that fits over your gums and looks like natural gum tissue. The base of the upper denture is molded to fit the roof of your mouth, while the lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to allow space for your tongue. Full dentures fit snugly over your gums. Most patients wear them throughout the day and remove them at night before going to bed.

Partial dentures are similar to full dentures but may contain a plastic or metal hook that is used to anchor the denture to existing teeth in your mouth. These teeth must be stable enough to support the partial denture. If your natural teeth are not strong enough to anchor the partial denture, crowns may be placed on them to stabilize them. Partial dentures provide a removable alternative to fixed bridges.

How long will it take to get used to wearing dentures?

You may feel uncomfortable for the first few weeks as you adjust to wearing dentures, and it may take time to get used to eating and speaking while wearing them. You will be exercising new facial muscles, as your cheeks and tongue learn how to best hold your dentures in place. Initially, you may experience an excessive flow of saliva, as well as minor chafing, irritation, or soreness in the gums. If the irritation lasts more than a few days, Dr. Emily or Dr. Patrick may be able to adjust your denture and make it more comfortable.

How long do dentures last?

While dentures may last for many years, they require regular maintenance and may need to be repaired or remade as a result of the changes that occur in the mouth as you age. This may cause your dentures to become loose over time, making it difficult to chew or speak, or causing irritation in your gums. If you feel any of these symptoms, or any discomfort while wearing dentures, please call our office immediately, as it may mean that your dentures may need to be adjusted.