A Complete Denture is an appliance that replaces all the teeth in one jaw. It is not cemented or attached to any structures in the mouth and can be taken out.
The base of a complete denture is made of pink acrylic. The teeth are made of Tooth Colored acrylic or porcelain which attach into the base.
A complete denture restores function and appearance to a jaw with no teeth. It is the most cost effective way of replacing all the teeth in one jaw. A complete denture can also provide important support to facial structures such as the lips, helping to maintain a more youthful appearance.
A complete denture, even under the best of circumstances, DOES NOT have the same chewing efficiency as natural teeth. The ability to chew food depends on the stability, support and retention of the denture. Stability, support and retention are affected by many factors, including the amount and type of bone, gums and saliva present in the patient’s mouth as well as the shape of the patient’s jaw and how it fits with the opposing teeth.
The alternatives to having a complete denture are:
- Implants which attach to:
- Crowns or bridges
- A complete implant retained or implant supported denture
- Leave your mouth as it is
Uneven or excessive bite forces may cause wear or fracture of the denture teeth or denture base. Chewing will make a complete denture rock slightly in the mouth; the more uneven the biting force, the more the complete denture will rock.
To keep the tissue under the appliance healthy, your denture should be left out of your mouth during sleep. The teeth in the denture are not as strong as your natural teeth and you will not be able to chew as heavily on them. The appliance will tend to get food trapped underneath it and you may have to remove and clean it after eating. The fit between a complete denture and the gums is very important for retention, and therefore must be re-established every 2-5 years as gums are constantly undergoing small change.