Dentures are prosthetic devices constructed to replace missing teeth, and which are supported by surrounding soft and hard tissues of the oral cavity, they are also known as false teeth. There are two types of dentures; complete dentures and partial dentures. Partial dentures are used when some natural teeth is still remaining in the mouth while complete dentures are used when all the teeth are missing.
A partial denture is made up of replacement teeth that are attached to a pink or gum-colored plastic base, which is connected by metal framework that holds the denture in place in the mouth. A partial denture fills in the spaces created by missing teeth and also prevents other teeth from changing position. A permanent bridge replaces one or more teeth by placing crowns on the teeth on either side of the space and attaching artificial teeth to them, the bridge itself is then cemented into place. Whereas fixed bridges are permanent, a partial denture is removable and has internal attachments rather than clasps that attach to the adjacent crowns.
On the other hand a complete denture can either be conventional or immediate, immediate dentures are made in advance and can be positioned as soon as the teeth are removed while conventional dentures are made after the teeth have been removed and the gum tissue has begun to heal, the dentures are then placed two to three months after the teeth have been removed. The main disadvantage of immediate dentures is that they require more adjustments to fit properly during the healing process because bones and gums shrink during this time and should therefore be used just temporarily until conventional dentures are made . However, with immediate dentures you do not have to do without teeth during the healing period.
As much as dentures try to restore the functionality of the teeth and bring back the smile, they are not the best option; dentures do not offer that pleasant feeling and patients may experience certain discomforts. The patient will need to avoid certain foods and also take precaution on how he/she chews or bites. In the recent years, dental implants have come to replace dentures as the best option for teeth restoration as implants offer more lasting solutions, thanks to the advancements in modern implant dentistry.