Advancement in medicine has led to breakthroughs in various medical fields like surgery, optometry, physiology, and dentistry. Dentistry’s primary focus is on maintaining balanced oral hygiene and is closely associated with the teeth.
One of the breakthroughs in dentistry as related to oral management is the development of dentures. Dentures, commonly referred to as dental plate or false teeth, are replaceable dental appliances used to replace gap teeth, imbalanced teeth, and dislocated teeth. A denture is a remedy in restoring and correcting any form of teeth deficiency.
Types of dentures
- Partial dentures
- Full or complete dentures
A partial denture is mainly used for patients who lost one or some of their natural teeth while remaining intact in a health condition. Partial dentures are a removable appliance that fits perfectly into the dislocated teeth sockets because they support oral tissues. In contrast, the remaining natural teeth usually serve as abutments or anchors.
Components of partial dentures
- Denture base
The denture base is that part that serves as overlaying to the edentulous area.
- Major connectors
The component is saddled with connecting one end of the prosthesis to the other end of the prosthesis.
- Direct retainers
Direct retainers are the components of partial dentures that hold each denture in a firm position, ensuring each of the dentures remains fixated to their rightful places.
- Artificial teeth
It is the replacement of the natural teeth that are usually attached to the denture base.
Full or complete dentures
Unlike partial dentures, a full or complete denture is mainly used for patients who have lost their natural teeth. The first procedure involves restoring the gum tissue into a healthy condition, which usually requires 8 to 12 weeks to implant dentures.
Components of full dentures
- Artificial teeth
The artificial teeth serve as the replacement for the natural teeth attached to the denture base.
- Denture flange
A denture flange is the border area between the lips, cheeks, and teeth. It is the broader area that extends in the vestibule region.
- Denture base
The denture base is the foundational part of dentures. It is those components that make contact with the oral tissues like bony ridges and palate.
Benefits of dentures to the overall health
- Preservation of the remaining teeth
It is usual for natural teeth to drift into existing space created by missing teeth, leading to biting problems and malocclusion. When there is space, natural teeth tend to erupt, tilt, and be misaligned if the teeth are not replaced for some time. It may lead to TMJ (temporomandibular joint) pain and disorder. These tooth problems can be avoided with the help of implanting partial dentures, which prevents the movement.
- Chewing and Digestion
One of the resulting consequences of tooth loss is that it hampered the ability to chew food effectively. In the long run, it also affects the digestive system. The teeth play a crucial role in food digestion because food digestion starts from the mouth. So, if the food is not adequately processed in the mouth, the breakdown of food becomes extremely difficult. Properly chewed food, as a result, missing teeth leads to poor digestion.
Although dentures are not as effective as natural teeth, implant-like dentures are still better for chewing and digestion than having empty tooth socket space with no teeth.
Dentures represent an improvement in dental delivery services. Before the invention of dentures, people suffering from missing teeth or teeth misalignment had no remedy for correcting teeth deficiency.
Dentures serve as a lifeline for people with oral-related issues associated with the teeth. Either partial or complete dentures, dental patients can rest assured that there is a multilayered solution to varying degrees of dental health problems.
Also, it is essential to note that while dentures provide solutions to teeth-related problems. Sometimes dentures require adequate maintenance to serve for an extended period while offering lasting solutions to dental issues.