If you’re faced with having all your teeth removed, you may be asked to decide if you want a same day denture (also called an immediate denture) or if you prefer the traditional method. Both have good and bad points. First, let’s look at what happens with your jaw when you have a tooth removed.
Part of your jaw bone is there just to hold teeth in the jaw. Once your tooth or teeth are removed, that bone is no longer needed, so your body absorbs it. This causes the shape of your jaw to change to more of a saddle shape. The changes to your bone are very rapid at first. They do eventually slow down to the point where the changes are less noticeable, but the loss of bone continues from the time the tooth is taken out until you die. (This is why dentures stop fitting over time. Your bone shrinks—but the denture material stays the same.)
In the traditional method of making dentures, you have your teeth removed and then you wait for healing to take place and for the bone changes to stabilize. Two (2) months is the least amount of time recommended, and generally we will say that the longer you can wait, the more stable your jawbone will be when you do have your dentures made. What does this mean for you? It means your dentures will fit better. And they will fit better longer. You will also have the chance to see and approve the way the dentures look in your mouth. The downside is that you are without teeth for a number of months. (If all goes well, it can take over a month to make your dentures and have them ready for you to wear home.)
Same Day (or Immediate) Dentures get rid of that waiting time. You will have a denture put in on the day that your teeth are removed. You leave it in for 24 hours before removing it for the first time. Sounds great, right? But let’s look at the downside:
- You will not have a chance to view the denture set up in your mouth to see what it looks like with your features.
- Your dentist cannot preview the fit prior to it being put in your mouth. Your dentist and the dental lab have to make an educated guess as to where we think your bone will be once your teeth are removed.
- You may have more pain (for several reasons: There is a bit of gum swelling when your tooth is removed and that swelling pushes against the denture. You may also have some bony pointy areas that rub against the denture.) Removing the denture before the 24 hour period, may mean that you cannot put them back in because the area swells.
- Your immediate denture’s fit will change as the areas heal. This usually results in the denture feeling loose, moving around or falling when you eat and/or talk. Fixing this is an additional expense. And you may have this happen several times as your bone changes!
So which way is the best way? It really depends on you. Both options have their plusses and their minuses. Either way, it is a trade off. So which one is right for you depends on what is most important to you. Learn more here: Removable Dentures
If you’re considering dentures, we’d be happy to discuss these options more in depth with you.
Dr. Jennifer Robb is a general dentist who treats patients of all ages. Call 440-960-1940 to make your appointment. Her office is located at 1612 Cooper Foster Park Rd., Lorain, OH 44053. You can also contact the office using the form on the website www.drjrobb.com
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