Dentures: What you don’t know can hurt you
Dentures may not seem complicated, but making dentures that fit well is anything but simple. Great dentures don’t come from a cookie cutter. Instead, they must be customized precisely to your mouth. Naturally, customization depends heavily on a dentist’s experience, technique and technology. However, you also play a critical role. Creating a well-fitting denture depends on your ability to communicate effectively with your dentist about fit, feel and function. Keep reading to find out the keys to getting a great fit for upper dentures, bottom dentures and full dentures. We’ll also show you how to know if the “dentures near me” dentist you’re looking at is good at what he does.
How to insure you get a great Fitting denture
The best fit is snug and comfortable. You should be able to speak naturally and chew soft foods without worrying that your teeth will fall out. In addition, your teeth shouldn’t look like dentures. They should look like beautiful, natural teeth.
How do you get great fit and function that looks fantastic? Keep reading to find out.
Curious what our patients say about their experience? Watch this video and see for yourself!
Getting the Best Fit
What Is A Great Fit?
A great fit means comfort. The plate must have good suction and not create sores. A great fit depends on creating a prototype with maximal coverage that is built on a very accurate model of the mouth. This requires a dentist with experience, technical expertise and high quality modeling materials.
A Great Fit Requires Great Communication
A great fit also requires clear communication from the patient. You need to tell the dentist what you see and feel, what you like and what you don’t like. Some things can be altered and others cannot, but you never know when what you’re feeling may be the key to helping the dentist get you a better fit.
Remember that your dentist CANNOT feel what you are feeling. He makes changes and adjustments based on what he sees and based on experience with other patients. You must teach him about you. Do not expect him to read your mind. Dentists are expert clinicians, not mind readers.
What Does My Dentist Need to Hear From Me to get the best results?
- When your new teeth are and are not comfortable.
- When you are frustrated or disappointed.
- What is working well and what is not as you try out the prototype.
- If it pinches or creates pain or pressure.
- What your smile looked like when you loved it (and what you loved) Remember that what people love in a smile can be subjective.
- What you hated about your smile. Especially for an upper denture – this matters a ton!
Start your journey to a dentures that fits!
Book Online Today or Call to Schedule (210) 691-1211
Every great fitting denture starts with a consultation.
You’ll get to sit down with Dr. Bec and tell him what you’re looking for and get answers to your questions. Get prices, options and timelines.
Find out what you need to know to make the best decision for you.
A Great Fit Is a TWO Step Process
Many people expect their denture to fit perfectly from day one. It may fit WELL on day one, but NEVER perfectly.
Perfecting denture fits is a TWO step process that is only half way done on day one.
Step 1: Precisely Fit Your Mouth’s Shape
In step one, the dentist designs the new teeth and denture plate to FIT the SHAPE of the mouth and jaws. For an upper denture, this means getting an exact fit on the upper palate. For a bottom one, this means matching the space around the jaw. This process “creates” the denture and ends with denture delivery.
how we match Mouth Fit
We test and perfect the fit of the denture to mouth using multiple prototypes. This process insures that the size, shape and orientation of the denture fit your mouth like a glove. This process also perfects the look of the denture insuring that the teeth match the right size, shape and color.
Pro-tip: You can tell that this is a prototype denture because it’s missing the pink color on the gums. In our digital process, we focus on teeth and fit before adding the pink.
Step 2: Precisely Fit Your Mouth’s Movement
Next, the teeth must be adjusted to match mouth MOVEMENT. After you wear them home and come back with feedback, we make tiny modifications to the way the teeth come together, the pressure points and the places that the dentures meet your muscles. Some people only need one adjustment. However, people with sensitive musculature, irregular occlusion, or TMJ issues may require MANY adjustments. These small adjustments make the difference between a poor fit and a GREAT one!
Keys for a great fit: upper dentures, bottom dentures & full dentures
Upper Dentures Fit
An upper denture needs to be designed very carefully to look and feel as natural as possible. If it’s too tall, you’ll knock it out of place frequently. While if gums are too long, you’ll look like a horse. Furthermore, if it extends too far back on the palate, you’ll feel like gagging. Furthermore, a well-fitted palate is key to upper stability.
Bottom Dentures Fit
Bottom ones are tricky because they create minimal natural suction. A great fit requires finding a good balance point between the tongue and the cheeks as well as the teeth and the tongue. In addition, the plate needs to extend backwards behind the last tooth up the curve of the jaw. When it doesn’t extend far enough, it causes instability. Not extending far enough is the most common fit mistake made by inexperienced dentists and techs.
For most patients, jaw bone shape and height make it impossible stabilize lower dentures without implants. The majority of patients get good stability from two implants, while others require four.
Full Dentures Fit
A full set presents its own issues. The teeth need to be placed so that they come together at a point close to where the natural teeth come together. If the jaw sits in a place that is more or less open than it wants to be, it creates movement in the dentures, as well as jaw problems and chewing issues. Also, denture teeth don’t come together like natural teeth. If the denture is designed with “normal teeth” occlusion, it creates stability issues. If you notice your denture moving a lot or losing suction when you chew, it may not have proper occlusion.
Not surprisingly, denture function depends on the fit. If it doesn’t fit well, you won’t be able to chew or talk well. Even if it fits well when you’re not moving, it will malfunction as soon as you begin using it if it hasn’t been fitted to your mouth movement.
Getting Beautifully Natural Looking Dentures
Natural looking false teeth must be well designed, made from good materials and not cause obvious movements when you speak or eat. The best looking ones are custom designed to fit your mouth and face, aligning the teeth naturally in the smile, choosing a natural tooth shade, shape and size. Especially for an upper denture, a good esthetic design is essential for your smile.
Is the “Denture Dentist Near me” a good one?
It’s easy to find a dentist with Facebook or Google. The HARD part is figuring out if that “denture dentist near me” knows what he’s doing or not. Hearing what real patients have to say about their experience is one way to find out what kind of dentist he is.
Keep reading to learn the 6 questions that tell you if the dentist is a good denture dentist or not.
6 questions to Find out how that “denture dentist near me” ranks
1. Do they see children?
If a dentist sees children, they are focused on family dentistry: cleanings, fillings and crowns, braces and whitening. Dentists who see children have a great skill set, but they are not going to be specialized in missing teeth or dentures.
2. How many pages on the website are dedicated to denture-related services and missing teeth?
If they only casually mention dentures, then they only casually do them. If they created web pages dedicated to the topic and missing teeth, then it probably matters to them.
3. Is their primary selling point how cheap their dentures are?
If they pride themselves on doing cheap work, take that at face value. They make cheap dentures not great ones. Good dental materials cost a lot – you get what you pay for.
4. Have they completed continuing education on dentures, missing teeth & removable prosthetics?
In dental school, dentists don’t learn to make great dentures. Dental school only teaches the basics. Dentist learn to make great dentures with the help of training after dental school and years of experience. For example, not only has Dr. Bec completed many specialized courses and also teaches on the topic of digital dentures. This is one major reason that any “denture dentist near me” may offer the service without being good at it.
5. Do they accept HMO insurance?
Any dentist who accepts HMO insurance pays his bills by seeing a high volume of patients and by offering the least expensive quality and trying to upsell add-ons to that base quality. You will not receive individualized attention or treatment in a clinic like this. You should also not expect high quality dentures. These clinics do their best to serve their patients with limited treatment possibilities and with the quality that HMO insurance allows. If you are looking for quality service or products, avoid these clinics.
6. Have they been recognized by key dental associations dedicated to dentures, missing teeth or adult dentistry?
Any dentist who has developed expertise in an area will be recognized by his mentors and peers for his efforts. Dr. Bec has been awarded fellowships in the Academy of General Dentistry, which focuses on expertise in advanced adult dentistry, in the International College of Oral Implantologists, which focuses on advanced dental implant techniques, and in the International Academy of Dental Facial Esthetics which focuses on advanced reconstructive cosmetic dentistry and missing teeth replacement. He has lectured on digital dentures at the national Digital Denture Symposium and is on the editorial board of the International Journal of 3D Printing in Dentistry. If the “dentures near me” dentist you are looking at doesn’t have any professional recognitions, he probably does not have a high level of expertise.
Dr. Bec being awarded a fellowship in the prestigious Academy of General Dentistry
With additional fellowships in Implantology & Facial Esthetics, he is a internationally recognized expert & lecturer in the field of digital dentures.