If you have a gap in your mouth that affects your smile and makes you feel uncomfortable, you are not alone. Many other people have had their teeth extracted due to one dental disease or another, and they have managed to maintain their smile, beauty, functionality, and look. The point is, all is not lost after you have lost a tooth or multiple teeth. We have several artificial teeth replacement options that will restore your smile and appearance just like it was before. Specialty dentures are one of the cost-effective tooth replacement options you can choose.
At Northridge Dentist, we perform all tooth replacement procedures in quick and comfortable steps that leave our patients with the best probable outcome. After you have discussed your situation and needs with us, we will recommend the best option to replace your missing teeth. Our dedication to using advanced technology and astounding patient care has made our cosmetic dentistry an excellent choice for most patients. If you are in Northridge, and you need the services of a dentist, reach out to us as soon as possible. This article focuses on specialty dentures, including their placement procedure, pros and cons, and how to take care of them.
An Overview of Specialty Dentures
A specialty denture is one of the many different forms of dental appliances, varying from a dental bridge. It has false teeth that are supported by a framework made of different materials. The framework is attached to the original teeth on either of the sides, similarly to retainers. It is easy to remove specialty dentures, which allows you to take them out during the night then clean them thoroughly.
Specialty dentures are also referred to as partial dentures. They are a non-invasive and affordable alternative to dental implants. Partial dentures are used to replace missing teeth that do not need one to use full dentures. That is, they are used if a patient still has a few healthy teeth left. The dentures are usually clipped around the remaining natural teeth. The clips may be visible when a patient talks, but they can be made in material that resembles the patient’s tooth color, so no one notices them when the patient talks.
Multiple gaps in the teeth are a result of physical trauma, decay, etc. Specialty dentures, just like dental bridges, do fill these gaps by replacing multiple missing teeth at ago without having to undergo surgery. When a missing tooth is not replaced, it leads to the other remaining neighboring teeth to shift, which eventually leads to a decreased ability to chew and speak, and an altered appearance. Northridge Dentist’s thoughtful and proactive approach to patient care may resolve these kinds of problems and many others.
How Specialty Dentures are Built
Specialty dentures are made similarly to dental bridges. X-ray pictures and the impression of the teeth are taken, and molds made. After which the specialty dentures are manufactured as per the precise needs of a patient. The small clasps on the dentures attach to the neighboring healthy teeth, holding the specialty denture in position. After installation of the denture, both a healthy, happy smile and natural function are reinstated.
Specialty dentures come in different materials, including metal and plastic. Just like the complete dentures, a specialty denture can also be removed and replaced. This means that thorough cleaning of these dentures is made simpler, while at the same time keeping a natural ability to chew as well as appearance.
Steps Towards Acquiring Specialty Dentures at Northridge Dentist Dental Clinic
Specialty denture placement is done in these simple steps:
- Consultation - The dental staff at our clinic will first discuss what your tooth replacement needs are and recommend the best option depending on the type of partial denture that suits you perfectly.
- Examination - After identifying your needs, we will examine the gaps left by the removed or missing teeth and the state of all the neighboring teeth.
- Impression - We will take an impression of your teeth to make sure we achieve a proper and custom fit.
- Creation - After we have examined and taken the impression of your teeth, the partial denture is made in a dental lab to your precise specifications.
- Fitting - After it has been built, the partial denture will be fixed in your mouth, and then checked if it fits correctly. After our dental staff has done a thorough inspection of how the denture fits, the partial denture will be ready for use.
Like it is with your original teeth, partial dentures need proper upkeep and care. The best practices you can follow to keep them clean include:
- Brushing after every meal
- Flossing regularly
- Cleaning the denture every day
- Scheduling regular professional cleaning services and check-ups
Best Techniques to Clean Specialty Dentures
You will have to brush the specialty dentures daily to get rid of plaque as well as help to prevent the staining of the dentures. We recommend that you use a toothbrush that’s specifically designed to clean dentures. Denture brushes have bristles, which are particularly arranged to suit the dentures’ shapes. However, a regular brush with soft bristles can also serve the purpose. The bottom line here is you shouldn’t use a toothbrush with hard bristles that can destroy the dentures.
You may use mild dish soap or hand soap for cleaning the dentures. The other household cleaning detergents and most kinds of toothpaste are so abrasive, and they can damage the dentures.
Before you can clean your specialty dentures, hold them over a sink full of water or in a towel. The reason for doing this is that in case the denture accidentally falls, it won’t break. Then, rinse the dentures thoroughly to remove the loose food bites. When you are done, moisten the toothbrush then apply a denture-cleaning agent. Brush the surfaces of the dentures gently to avoid bending the metal or damaging the plastic.
Before you put your dentures back in, brush your neighboring teeth, tongue, palate, and gums using a toothbrush with soft bristles. This helps to remove plaque and stimulates blood circulations in the tissues.
Additional Ways of Taking Care of Specialty Dentures
Taking care of your specialty dentures needs more than just brushing your teeth, flossing, and cleaning the denture. Dentures could lose their original shape if they aren’t kept moist. As per the American Dental Association (ADA), specialty dentures have to be put in a soaking solution or warm water overnight. Doing this also assists in keeping them cleaner.
Specialty dentures are relatively fragile. Should they get damaged, do not try adjusting or repairing them by yourself. This may change how your denture fits, causing sores and irritation. Using over-the-counter glue or a do-it-yourself kit may damage the denture beyond repair.
In case your specialty dentures don’t fit properly anymore, or if they crack, break, or if the teeth adjacent to the denture loosens, you should see your dentist as soon as possible. Usually, dentists may be capable of making the required adjustments. A complicated repair may need the dentures to be taken to a certified laboratory.
Types of Specialty Dentures
We have several types of partial dentures you can go for, i.e., acrylic, flexible, and cast metal partial dentures. Each of these is made with different situations in mind. Whether you want a mandibular (bottom), maxillary (top), or both partial dentures, your needs are covered.
Cast Metal Specialty Dentures
The cast metal specialty dentures are less bulky, more robust, long-lasting, and are an excellent fit. These kinds of dentures have metal frameworks to which the dentists attach denture teeth. The metal structure isn’t visible. The colored acrylic plastic cover covers it. However, the moment you smile, these clasps can be seen. Since the metal frameworks have to be made in a laboratory, the dentures’ availability is between two and three weeks.
Acrylic Specialty Dentures
An acrylic specialty denture is more affordable. However, it is likely to feel bulkier. This type of specialty denture has an acrylic base to which the dentists set the denture tooth, and it is fixed to the adjacent natural teeth using small metal clasps. Acrylic specialty dentures can come with more natural-looking, durable false teeth. They are usually available on the same day.
Flexible Specialty Dentures
A flexible partial denture is made from a unique kind of material. Apart from being flexible, it is also comfortable and lightweight.
After the lab has made this denture, your dentist easily inserts the appliance in your mouth. Generally, the dentist will not have to adjust or change any of the original teeth. After the replacement process, most patients get used to their dentures quickly due to their comfort and thinness.
Tooth flippers are another kind of specialty denture. It is mainly used as a temporary stand-in as the dentist makes a long- term tooth replacement. It is an excellent option of specialty dentures for replacing a single tooth or more.
The advantage of using tooth flippers while waiting to get new dentures is that they can help to reduce tooth movement and bone loss in your mouth as your gums heal. Even though these dentures are convenient and less expensive, the quality often matches their price. They are thin. Thus, they may easily crack or break if they are dropped. Luckily, it is only a non-permanent fix until your final denture is available.
Complications and Side Effects that Come With Specialty Dentures
Specialty denture placement comes with the following complications:
Individuals that are allergic to nickel or any other metal may react to the metal structure that holds specialty dentures in position. Nickel allergies may lead to a burning sensation in the mouth. Additional symptoms include numbness and swollen gums.
Visit your dentist immediately if you have any concerns about metal allergies. Specialty dentures that aren’t made of metal, that is, those made of thermoplastic resin, might be the best option for those patients allergic to metal. These kinds of dentures are secured using resin clasps instead of metal frameworks.
Slippage of dentures is one of the common denture problems. A patient takes time for them to get used to new dentures. At first, patients may notice their specialty dentures slipping out of position when they eat or talk. If your denture continues to slip over time, there may be an issue with their fitting that requires a dentist’s correction. For instance, the resin clasps or metal framework may not fit comfortably enough to support the dentures in position.
Dental slippage may also occur to persons that have used their dentures for a considerable amount of time. After a while, the gum tissues may recede, or the remaining natural teeth may shift. When this happens, dentures that used to fit perfectly may begin to feel uncomfortable and lose. If this occurs to you, visit your dentist immediately. The dentist will adjust the dentures or re-make them if necessary. In specific cases, denture adhesives could help.
Caring for specialty dentures needs just a little effort and time to maintain them in their right shape. When putting on your specialty dentures, take care of your teeth and the whole mouth just like you usually would by avoiding acidic and sugary foods.
An Increase in the Saliva Level
When you first acquire false teeth, you might experience an increase in your mouth’s amount of saliva. This is normal. The saliva will subside as your mouth adapts to the new addition. A few people experience temporary nausea too.
Difficulty While Eating
You may find it challenging to eat in the beginning before you get accustomed to the new dentures. Begin with liquids and soft foods to get used to the dentures first. Similarly, you might find that you are struggling to speak like you used to before you got the dentures. This will get simpler as you get accustomed to them. Practice saying the words that are more difficult to pronounce as it speeds up the process.
Sores and Irritation
Sometimes, dentures can cause sores and irritation in your mouth while you are still getting accustomed to them. This is a common occurrence and usually subsides as time passes. Gargle using saltwater and keep excellent dental hygiene to assist you in treating these symptoms.
High Air Pressure that Can Dislodge the Dentures
It is also common to have high air pressure against specialty dentures when you sneeze or cough. This could dislodge them. To avoid this, you should cover your mouth using your hand while yawning, coughing, or sneezing.
In a nutshell, the various signs that show your dentures need adjustment, repair, or refit include:
- Cracks or chips in the dentures
- Difficult in chewing after the period of adjustment (which could take approximately one week)
- Pressure sores developing around the area the dentures are fixed into position, particularly after the period of adjustment
- Changing fit after a while, where it is not as comfortable as before (specialty dentures may fall out or slip more often. This is normal, but if it happens after several years, then it would need refitting.
- Changes in your consistent speech pattern, which doesn’t end even after the period of adjustment
Benefits of Specialty Dentures
Various advantages of specialty dentures make them an attractive tooth replacement option. They include:
- Looks - Specialty dentures appear relatively natural.
- Affordability - These dentures are less expensive than other dentures and the various tooth replacement options if you have numerous missing teeth in your mouth.
- Quick preparation - You will not have to wait for a long time for your denture after the dentist takes your mouth’s impression.
- They stabilize your natural teeth - This feature makes your original teeth less likely to shift.
- Easy to put on
- Specialty dentures are non-invasive
- They are a better choice than complete dentures to replace lost teeth in the lower jaw, particularly if some teeth can be preserved. Many people have difficulties adapting to detachable complete lower dentures.
- Additional teeth could be added to the partial denture based on the kind of material used to make the partial and other factors.
- They improve your speech after getting used to them.
- They are removable, thus easy to clean.
Drawbacks of Specialty Dentures
While we have several advantages of using specialty dentures to fill the gaps in your mouth and restore your smile, we also have a few disadvantages. They include:
- Discomfort - As we mentioned earlier, your dentures may feel uncomfortable in the mouth at first, especially when you first begin to use them. This may make different activities like eating and talking feel unnatural. In case your dentures feel painful, visit your dentist so he/she can inspect them.
- Allergy - Also, as we said earlier, you can be allergic to materials used to make specialty dentures. Ensure you discuss your allergy record with your dentist before opting for partial dentures.
- Maintenance - There’s a risk of tooth decay and gingivitis (gum disease) if you do not properly clean your dentures.
- The dentures may loosen after a while. Specialty dentures are meant to grip your existing teeth. However, since you will be using them regularly, it may lead to grip loosening. You may need to inquire from your dentist so he/she can adjust your denture to enable it to fit comfortably again.
- Risk of gum recession. Specialty dentures cover your gums. This makes saliva flow in that particular area slow down or stop. Your saliva assists in keeping your gums clean, therefore, preventing recession.
- Specialty dentures may lose their proper shape if they aren’t kept moist. During the night, the denture must be placed in water or a soaking solution. Your dentist may recommend the ideal method to keep your dentures in their right shape.
How Much Does Specialty Dentures Cost?
The price of specialty dentures ranges anywhere between $400 and $3,100, based on different factors like material, the number of missing teeth, and the type of denture. Specialty dentures aren’t always covered by insurance. Commonly, insurance covers half the total cost of specialty dentures after the insurance policy’s deductible is paid, that is, if it has one. The most suitable way of knowing your insurance covers is to check out with your insurance company directly.
How to Remove Your Partial Dentures
It is simple to detach your specialty dentures from your mouth. Here is a quick step-by-step procedure:
- Fill the sink with water, just if you drop the dentures. This way, they will float in the water rather than possibly breaking or cracking upon hitting the sink bowl.
- Rinse your mouth using water or an alcohol-free mouthwash
- To detach either your lower or upper denture, put your index finger and thumb on the denture’s metal or plastic sections. Ensure while at it, you avoid handling the clasps.
- Pull the partial denture gently from your mouth in the path in which they were inserted. Remember to be gentle.
Note that you should not use any other object that’s not your fingers to remove the denture. Another point to note is that it isn’t good to sleep with specialty dentures in your mouth. It will be best to remove them at night, clean them, and put them in a denture-safe solution. Should you regularly sleep with the dentures on, you will most likely develop denture and tongue plaque, thrush, or an inflammation of your gums.
Find a Dentist Specializing in Specialty Dentures Near Me
At Northridge Dentist, we strive to provide the best services as far as cosmetic dentistry is concerned since we understand just how important every smile is. We will work with you to establish the ideal course of action for your dental problem and recommend a specialized treatment option that will meet your needs. Our entire staff is focused on delivering exceptional services and care to every patient that visits our clinic. We serve patients in Northridge, CA that have dental-related problems. If this is you, call us as soon as possible at 818-875-0216 and schedule an appointment with us. We offer a wide range of treatment options, including specialty dentures. A missing tooth doesn’t have to make you uncomfortable and limit your smile and functionality. Call us now because we have a solution for you.