According to the American College of Prosthodontists, more than 36 million Americans don’t have teeth and more than 120 million are missing at least one tooth. Even if you practice good oral hygiene, your teeth may still deteriorate with age or because of disease or injury.
Our teeth not only help us chew, but they also aid in speech. However, just because you lost your teeth doesn’t mean you should lose your confidence or appetite. Dentures can act as apt replacements – whether you lost them due to age or an autoimmune condition.
Common Issues Caused By Missing Teeth
If you have lost one or several permanent teeth, you may be susceptible to the following:
- Missing teeth can cause facial muscles to sag, which can make you look older than you are.
- Your speech can get slurred as you have difficulty pronouncing certain words. That’s because speech requires coordination between the muscles and the teeth, lips, tongue, cheeks and the vocal tract. If you lose several teeth,sounds you can normally produce from the front of the mouth, your lower and upper teeth will sound distorted.
- Chewing will become a chore and you won’t be able to eat hard food, which has high nutritional value, such as nuts, apples, vegetables, etc. While you can switch to softer food, your diet may offer little in terms of nutritional value.
- Teeth on both sides of the gap left by the missing teeth may start to lean into the space, thereby becoming difficult to clean and create a bite problem. That’s because besides becoming crooked, they also leave gaps between neighboring teeth, which can also start to lean in.
Full Dentures vs. Partial Dentures
If you are missing several teeth and wish to get dentures, you have two options – full and partial dentures.
If you have lost all your natural teeth, you should go with a full set of dentures. Also known as complete dentures, these are made of plastic or acrylic, which is flesh colored. Depending on the state of your teeth, the set is designed and molded to sit comfortably on the gums.
Full dentures are removable and can be designed to fit the top or bottom gum line. The set remains in place by suction and an oral adhesive. The lower set is shaped like a horseshoe to accommodate the tongue and is held in place with it and cheek muscles.
If you have lost only one or two teeth, you can just get partial dentures rather than a full set. This is basically a gum-colored plastic base with one or more false teeth affixed on it. The set is often connected to natural teeth via a metal framework or clips.
Besides replacing missing teeth and making your smile look perfect, partial dentures can also prevent your neighboring teeth from shifting their positions.
Whether you need dentures put in or just want a regular dental checkup, book your appointment with Smile League Dental today. We are experienced family dentists who use cutting-edge technology and advanced dental tools to ensure the best dental care possible.