My Blog

Posts for: April, 2015

By Dr. K. Michael Murphy & Associates, LLC
April 06, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Dentures  

One of the most common reasons people are embarrassed to speak and eat in public is the poor appearance of their smiles. Cracked teeth, failing restorations, missing one, more or even all their teeth can make people self-conscious and unable to enjoy food and the good oral health that people have.

Why consider dentures?

The Journal of Prosthetic Dentistry estimates that more than 30 million people in the United States have or could benefit from Denturesdentures. These are individuals who have lost teeth due to:

  • injury
  • gum disease
  • extensive tooth decay
  • congenital defect

Cosmetic and reconstructive dentists have many ways to treat tooth loss, including conventional (removable) full and partial dentures, immediate dentures (placed right after extractions), and over dentures (supported by implants). All present viable solutions to the problems patients experience when they lose teeth. A quality, well-fitting denture can:

  • stabilize remaining teeth after extraction
  • make speaking and eating easier
  • stop collapse of facial muscles and associated premature wrinkling and aging
  • preserve teeth by spreading out strenuous biting forces which can cause cracking and chipping

The Procedure

A dentist who is experienced in reconstructive procedures and dentures, also called a prosthodontist, is an individual's best resource to decide if dentures are the right treatment. The dentist will take x-rays and use other appropriate imaging to accurately visualize the patient's oral cavity. That being done, and the decision made to proceed with dentures, the doctor will take impressions of the patient's mouth, and a skilled dental lab technician will create a three-dimensional model. The technician will use the model and the dentist's instructions to custom-fabricate the denture out of natural-looking pink and tooth-colored plastic. Some appliances, including partial dentures which are secured to existing teeth by clasps, have a metallic component, too.

Life with Dentures

While dentures are different from natural teeth, they are a great solution to many problems that occur when a person is missing several or all teeth. Facial muscles are supported, giving back a youthful appearance. While it does take some practice to learn chewing and speaking with dentures, people adjust quickly. Patients start out with eating soft foods but then quickly progress to a normal diet.

Dental hygiene and check-ups are very important for the denture wearer. Routinely, they should:

  • Brush or soak dentures with a cleanser approved by the American Dental Association
  • Brush cheeks, remaining teeth, gums, and tongue twice daily with a soft toothbrush to stimulate circulation and remove plaque
  • Visit the dentist twice yearly or as recommended
  • Go to the dentist as needed for adjustments to avoid sore spots

In Baltimore, Maryland, K. Michael Murphy & Associates, LLC are the "go-to" prosthodontists for expert dental restorations. K. Michael Murphy DDS MS, Alexandra T.Welzel DMD FAGD, Dawn Merguerian DDS FAGD, and Adam W. Orgel DDS MS have the highly specialized training and compassionate attitude to help you decide if dentures are the right solution for you. Call their Baltimore, MD office today to set-up a consultation: (410) 235-1233.