Over 20% of Canadian women and men between 60 and 79 have no natural teeth. If you’re one of those edentulous Canadians, dentures may offer an effective solution to tooth loss. Tooth loss is a serious medical issue that can affect your nutrition, your appearance, and even your ability to speak. Dentures are a flexible and effective solution for all of those issues, but a solution that comes with its own challenges and considerations.
If you’re considering dentures in NW Calgary as a potential solution for your tooth loss, here is some essential information you need to know to make well-informed decisions and choices.
What kinds of dentures are there?
There are four primary types of dentures that are appropriate depending on your particular circumstances.
Partial dentures replace several neighbouring teeth in one jaw in situations where a bridge isn’t an appropriate solution. Partial dentures are made after taking a mold of your existing teeth and jaw and are held in place by slotting in between the remaining teeth in your jaw.
Complete dentures replace all teeth in either the upper jaw, lower jaw, or both. If you have suffered the loss of just some teeth in one or both jaws, remaining teeth may be extracted to allow for the creation of full sets of dentures. Except for all-on-four dentures, discussed below, complete dentures are held to your gums via suction.
All-on-Four dentures are complete dentures that are not held in place with suction, but that are anchored to your jaw by dental implants. The implants fuse powerfully to your jaw as if they were a natural root, and permanently hold your dentures in place as if they were a natural set of teeth.
If you have teeth extracted to prepare for dentures, your gums and jaw need to heal fully before you can be fit with your new dentures. During your weeks-long recovery between extraction and fitting with your new dentures, you’ll wear temporary immediate dentures. They’re held in place by suction.
Challenges associated with dentures in NW Calgary
Some people who wear dentures report pain, soreness, and sores affecting their gums. There are several potential causes for these symptoms and several strategies for resolving them to restore as much function and comfort as possible.
Pain or discomfort while chewing or after wearing your dentures for a full day can indicate that the dentures do not fit properly and that they’re rubbing or loose. That constant rubbing can cause inflammation and discomfort.
Wearing dentures long-term can also contribute to gradual bone loss and atrophy due to the constant pressure and rubbing against the gums. That phenomenon can be accompanied by significant pain. Avoiding this result is one reason that many people considering dentures in NW Calgary consider All-on-Four dentures. These dentures do not rub against the gums but are mounted on posts.
Finally, wearing dentures constantly can contribute to the build-up of bacteria which can cause sores (that may or may not be accompanied by pain).
How to deal with pain and sores
Discomfort during the initial adjustment to wearing dentures is normal and will fade as you and your mouth become accustomed to the presence of dentures on your jaw(s). Proper cleaning involves soaking every night and brushing every morning.
Brushing your gums after removing your dentures at night is also essential to controlling bacteria and eliminating sources of sores.
Cleaning and maintaining dentures properly will prevent the build of bacteria that can produce sores.
Soreness caused by dentures that do not fit properly because the shape of your jaw has changed with time — as happens normally and as a result of wearing dentures — may need to be adjusted, re-lined, or replaced with new dentures for your newly shaped jaw(s).
Are you curious about whether dentures may be a good solution for tooth loss issues? Let us answer any questions about dentures, or about any troubles, your dentures may be giving you.