What is a denture?

Dentures, also known as “false teeth,” are a removable replacement for patients’ missing teeth and the surrounding tissues. Patients needing dentures have typically lost several teeth due to periodontal disease and tooth decay.

Until the mid-19th century, dentures used to be made from human or animal teeth, but modern dentures are made from a plastic base.

Contact Comprehensive Dental Health, LLC at 203-624-5515 to speak with one of our staff about dentures!

What is the difference between a full denture and partial denture?

Partial dentures are for our New Haven patients who are missing some of their teeth on either their maxillary (upper) or mandibular (lower) arch. Fixed partial dentures are made from dental crowns that are fitted on your remaining teeth and are created from materials to resemble your missing teeth.

Full dentures are for patients who are missing all of their teeth in either the maxillary (upper) or mandibular (lower) arch. Full dentures (also known as complete dentures) can be either “conventional” or “immediate.” A conventional denture is ready for placement in the mouth about 8 to 12 weeks after any decayed teeth have been removed and the gum tissue has healed properly. Unfortunately, this means our patients will have to be without teeth while waiting for the healing process to complete.

Immediate dentures are made in advance and can be positioned and worn as soon as your teeth are removed. However, as your gums heal, they tend to shrink, so your immediate dentures are more likely to require extra fittings in the future.

How do I get new dentures?

The denture development process takes about three to six weeks and several appointments. You will meet with Dr. Joseph Tagliarini to help you determine what kind of denture is right for you and your mouth. In some cases, dental implants can be used in place of dentures. Once a course of action has been decided upon, the Comprehensive Dental Health, LLC team will:

  • Make a series of impressions of your jaw to ensure we make dentures that fit your mouth exactly.
  • Create models in the exact shape and position of the dentures you will eventually be wearing. To ensure proper fit and shape, you will get to “test drive” each denture model before the final denture is created.

Once we have perfected the model, we will cast a final denture and any last minute adjustments will be made as necessary to ensure proper fit and comfort.

Will new dentures make me feel, look, and eat differently?

Your new dentures may feel a little odd for a few weeks, until the muscles in your cheeks and tongue learn to keep them in place and you get comfortable inserting and removing them. Dentures are designed to look and feel as close to real teeth as possible, but your mouth has to learn how to use them!

Eating with your new dentures will take a little practice and may be uncomfortable for a few weeks. If you had braces as a child, you will remember re-learning how to shape your mouth and lips around them—the same holds true for dentures. Be careful with hot or hard foods and sharp-edged bones or shells, and avoid foods that are extremely sticky or hard, as these are harder to eat while you are getting used to your dentures and can cause your dentures to slip.

Know that your dentures may occasionally slip when you laugh, cough, or smile. To reposition the dentures, simply bite down gently and swallow. If any speaking problem persists after a few weeks, please give us a call and Dr. Joseph Tagliarini will check to see if any adjustments can be made to ensure a better fit. For some patients who have lost too much supporting bone, dentures alone will not remain stable, and a treatment plan of dentures and implants may be recommended to stabilize the denture.

Please keep in mind that it is not unusual for you to suffer from minor soreness or irritation when you first start wearing dentures. This is completely normal, and these problems will diminish as your mouth adjusts.

Will my insurance company cover the cost of my dentures?

Most dental insurance providers cover some, if not all, of the cost of your dentures. However, we recommend contacting your insurance company to find out the specifics of what they will cover.

You can contact our dentist at Comprehensive Dental Health, LLC to learn more about full and partial dentures in New Haven, Connecticut.