What is an immediate denture?

You’ve been advised by a dentist to get dentures.
This information will help to explain what that means and clear up any questions you may have. It’s important to remember that a denture is a treatment for having no teeth, and NOT a replacement of natural teeth.

Let’s explain this by using an example:

Suppose you have eight (8) upper teeth remaining. These teeth are, unfortunately poor and cannot be used in any way to support a new denture. If you were to have a traditional denture made, it would be necessary to have all these teeth extracted first, the bone and gums would have to heal and then a denture could be made.

This process could take several months, if not longer, and for that time period you would’ve to go around without any teeth. Alternatively, to going around toothless while the gums heal, we utilise an immediate denture technique.
How is it done?

This involves taking impressions of your mouth while your teeth are still present. Models of your mouth are then produced. We can then do simulated extractions on the models and place the denture teeth as close to your natural placement as possible.

It may also be able to correct things about the position of your current teeth which are impeding your oral and overall health.

When your teeth are extracted invasively by a dentist, your new denture will be ready to be inserted at the same time, in this way you will never have to walk around without teeth.

Adapting to immediate dentures

Perseverance is your new key word!

It is very important that you follow the post-operative instructions of your dentist and dental prosthetist very carefully. Ensure you attend your follow up appointments. You must wear your new immediate denture constantly for two (2) days after your surgery, or such time as your dentist advises, without removing it. This will help to control the swelling and bleeding, and will help prevent dry socket.

Ensure you follow the oral hygiene instructions provided by your dentist and dental prosthetist. This will usually include frequent rinsing of the mouth with salty water. This helps control harmful bacteria, encouraging healing of the gums.

After the extraction of teeth there may be some swelling. By placing your denture in immediately, this swelling can be kept to a minimum. If the denture was not placed in immediately, the swelling that occurs might not allow you to wear your denture until it has subsided. Immediate placement also assists in controlling the bleeding

Speech may be affected and eating with dentures is a learning process. It is something that can only be achieved through perseverance.

Biting should be avoided, and you will now have to slice, dice, break, cut or tear food into manageable portions as unlike your natural teeth, the denture is not anchored in the bone and will move whenever you attempt to bite. Chewing should be comfortable.

Since we are unable to try in the denture prior to extracting your teeth, certain aesthetic compromises may have to be made. This should not present any significant problem and your aesthetic result should be more than satisfactory.

The gums shrink inwards and away from your lips as they heal, so tooth positioning may appear different as the healing progresses. Let us assure you that when we made your immediate denture, the denture teeth were placed as close as possible to the positions of your natural teeth.

In some cases, healing and shrinkage can cause so much anatomical change that it is necessary to make a new denture. The original immediate denture will then serve as a “spare” or emergency denture.

Due to the initial swelling and healing of the gums, the new denture/s may not fit a 100% as intended. This can cause pressure spots and discomfort; it can also affect the bite with apposing teeth and cause an imbalance.

Please contact our clinic for a denture adjustment to restore the function.

Please do not wait too long and allow for ulcers to form due to the pressure.

Maintaining Immediate Dentures

During the initial healing the use of temporary liners in the denture may be required, after three (3) to six (6) months, you will either need a permanent reline of your immediate denture or fabrication of an entirely new denture. There will be a separate fee for these services which can be quoted to you upon request.

If a new denture needs to be made, you will have the option to make changes, adjustments and improvements where required.

In this case your immediate denture can be kept as a spare (emergency) denture. Failure to reline an immediate denture may allow tissue to grow into your denture, causing discomfort and soreness.

Speech is frequently affected by new dentures but is also one of the easiest problems to resolve. Simply reading out loud, or singing if you enjoy it, will allow your tongue to find the correct position for producing clear speech. If you find any speech impediment, simply slow down as you talk or sing, and you will soon find a more comfortable pace that adapts to your new denture.

It is important to treat your dentures as you should treat your natural teeth. They must be kept as clean as possible to prevent inflamed gums, bacterial and fungal infections or further tooth loss. We recommend that you clean your dentures twice a day and after eating when necessary.

You must always remove your denture/s from your mouth before cleaning. We recommend the use of a soft toothbrush together with an effective denture cleaning solution, such as a denture toothpaste brushing the denture/s as needed. You should also brush your natural teeth if you have any left and your gums to stimulate blood circulation. Soaking your dentures using denture cleaning tablets dissolved in water as directed is advised.

If you have any questions or require further information regarding immediate dentures, phone 07 3282 9018 or ask us at your next appointment.