Different Types Of Dentures

MANY OF US HAVE TO deal with tooth loss as we get older, whether it be because of an injury or tooth decay.  What can we do when this happens to us?  Fortunately, the field of prosthodontics (false teeth) has come a long way, giving us plenty of options for filling those gaps back in.

Dentures Throughout History

The first known dentures were made around 700 BC in northern Italy.  These dentures were made from human and animal teeth, and although a set of these dentures would deteriorate quickly, they remained the norm for two and a half millennia.  However, the industrial revolution in the 1800s led to a massive increase in the amount of sugar people consumed, and this caused the demand for higher quality dentures to increase dramatically.

It was around that time that people started trying new materials, such as ivory, which lasted much longer.  In fact, hippo and elephant ivory are what George Washington’s dentures were really made of, not wood!  Nowadays, false teeth are made of porcelain or acrylic resin, depending on the situation.  These are much stronger and more durable materials.

Modern Denture Types

Your individual situation will determine the type of denture that would work best for you.  Someone who still has some of their natural teeth will not require the same kind of denture as someone with no natural teeth, so what are the different types?

  • Full dentures are a complete set of removable false teeth.  They can be just the top teeth, just the bottom, or both.  These may be made of porcelain, which imitates the look and feel of natural teeth, and they can last from 5-10 years.
  • Partial dentures are for people who still have some healthy natural teeth.  The new teeth fill the gaps so the natural teeth do not start to shift and cause new oral problems.  They are often made of acrylic resin, which will not wear down the natural teeth like porcelain will, but do not last as long.
  • Fixed dentures, meaning non-removable dentures, come in a few different varieties.  There are implants, which are surgically placed into the jaw bone and fuse over time to mimic the old root; bridges, which fill gaps by being cemented to the teeth on either side of the hole; and implant-supported dentures, which use implants as anchors for dentures.

Which Dentures Are Right For You?

Figuring out the ideal replacement teeth for you can be tricky, particularly if you have never needed them before, but that is why you have us!  Schedule a visit with us as soon as you can so we can talk about what type you need and set up a plan to get you on your way back to a bright, full smile!

As always, thank you for putting your trust in us!


Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.