New Teeth, Immediately…
Dentists are generally in the business of saving teeth. On a daily basis, we go to great lengths to educate our patients on the true value of keeping all of their teeth for all of their life. There’s nothing dentistry can do that’s as good as what God came up with.
Unfortunately, we commonly see sets of teeth that just cannot be saved. Sometimes the only reliable option we have is to remove all broken and infected teeth and make a new set of complete dentures. Despite the common misconception, “My mom has dentures, so I guess I will too,” we are not born pre-destined to have chronic tooth problems. If started at an early age, proper diet, good oral hygiene, and preventive dental care will allow most anybody to maintain their own teeth.
So what’s a person to do if their teeth just cannot be saved?
The “conventional denture route” takes a while to get a new set of teeth. “A while,” means four to six weeks of healing after having all of your broken teeth removed. This is then followed by another four to six weeks that are actually needed to make the dentures. That can mean two to three months with no teeth. A diet of shakes, ice cream, and mashed potatoes can be fun, but four months worth might get a little old.
People rarely accept a four month wait to get their teeth. Fortunately, we have a solution called interim immediate complete dentures. That’s a long way of saying take the teeth out and put new teeth in on the same day, at the same appointment. You walk in with worn out teeth and walk out with a new denture. Or implants. Or both.
As with any procedure, there are advantages and disadvantages with immediate dentures. The advantages are never going without teeth, immediately improved esthetics, and improved healing because the immediate denture acts as a big bandage. The disadvantage is that an immediate denture is considered interim because the bone where the teeth were removed will change drastically within the first six months. This means that a new denture will often need to be re-made after healing occurs. The use of bone grafts and dental implants can help to minimize this loss of bone.
To find out if immediate dentures are right for you, see your dentist. There are always options to optimal oral health.
Until next time, keep smiling.
-Questions or comments can be sent to Drs. Parrish at www.ParrishDental.com.