Saturday, 27 September 2014
How immediate are immediate dentures?
By Daniel Subbotin BSc, BA, DD
Immediate dentures are one of the most exciting and innovative dental techniques of the last century. Simply put, immediate denture is a dental procedure where a denture is created prior to removal of teeth and inserted immediate after teeth are extracted. This is a procedure with obvious advantages as well as some factors that must be considered.
Immediate partial dentures replace several but not all teeth in the patient’s mouth. Complete immediate dentures replace all teeth. To make the explanation comprehensive, immediate complete dentures can also be part of a dental treatment leading to a complete removable denture or implant treatment.
The most obvious advantage of immediate dentures is the availability of dentures immediately after “hopeless” teeth are extracted. In these cases, the ability to chew, swallow and speak is immediately restored.
Any patients who are considering immediate dentures must also be presented with their inherent difficulties. To begin, no adjustment period is available. Dentures are immediately introduced and may pose difficulties with eating, speaking or swallowing but a few post-operative adjustments can easily fix this. Immediate dentures also occupy more space in the mouth than natural teeth. Consequently, the new denture material now impacts tissues that did not previously have pressure on them.
Introducing immediate dentures does not allow for bone shrinkage that occurs with time. Mouth changes necessitate significant denture adjustments and reline appointments that create additional costs. In some cases, these changes will require subsequent new dentures.
The immediate denture process will typically consist of four stages. These are initial evaluation, immediate denture fabrication, surgical procedure and denture delivery and maintenance. When implants are the ultimate denture solution, immediate dentures constitute the final prosthesis prior to implants.
Additional procedures may also be necessary when patient jawbones need to be adjusted for maximum denture comfort. Tissue conditioning or “soft reline” is the placement of a soft, temporary liner inside the denture while a “hard reline” consists of resurfacing the denture base with a new hard material.
Your immediate dentures will be composed of specially designed plastics or dental polymers. The gum portion or denture base is designed to resemble natural gum tissue and teeth are available in a number of colours.
Some patients will be ineligible for this type of treatment. These are usually those patients whose medical conditions will not tolerate oral surgery or have jaw anatomy that will not allow for this procedure. Additionally, patients with a “gag reflex” or dexterity problems will be excluded from immediate denture options. And only on rare occasions, patients with allergies to denture compound materials will require alternative treatments.
In those instances where patients are eligible for the immediate denture alternative, this is an excellent method for eliminating the disruption of normal lifestyles. Patients are able to eat, swallow, drink and talk without interruption. Many patients report minimal pain that is quickly dissipated. Adaptation is immediate and often without significant challenges.
Whether immediate dentures are a permanent component of your denture program or part of a complete dental treatment, they should be carefully evaluated and understood. Prepare for the convenience of your dentures becoming an instantly available addition to your everyday habits. At the same time, you will need to prepare for the adjustments that will be necessary, the requirement for immediate adaptation and the possibility of discomfort.
Net gains are likely to outweigh the disadvantages. With the assistance of a competent dentist and denturist and realistic expectations, it is very likely that you will determine that immediate dentures are an excellent solution to be embraced.
You may well decide that the ability to eliminate the time that would ordinarily be required between teeth extraction and new dentures is well worth any disadvantages. Ultimately, your dental professional will make the decision as to eligibility. But clearly, your smile, state of mind and overall disposition are priorities to the immediate denture option that are simply unavailable with any other alternative.
For more information about immediate dentures please feel free to contact EPICITI Mobile Dental Care. House call mobile denture clinic services are available for seniors in nursing homes, retirement homes and hospitals. Home care denture services are available for residents in Toronto and surrounding area, including Mississauga, Oakville, Burlington, Scarborough, Oshawa, Brampton, Markham, Richmond Hill, Aurora and Newmarket. Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions.