Making a quality denture takes time and expertise. Here we explain what appointments you should expect to get a high end denture.
You cannot get a high quality denture in one day. However, in four visits, over a single month, we will make a denture that works well for you.
Our dentists will spend time analyzing every aspect of your mouth to make the best denture for you. In addition, we will listen to you and work hard to meet your specific wants and needs.
To learn more about getting a quality denture:
- Read our post: What Makes a Good Denture?
- Visit our Denture Before and After Gallery
- Contact our office for consult
Here is what to expect during your visits with Cranford Dental:
Appointment 1: Initial Exam and Impressions
Getting started on your denture is easy. First, contact us to schedule a visit with one of our dentists. Second, decide based on this visit that dentures are the right solution for your mouth. If you agree, we will begin your denture treatment at that visit.
During this first appointment, we will discuss your denture options with you. Be ready to discuss the following:
- How many teeth do you want or need to replace? (complete or partial denture)
- What type of denture do you need? (metal framework, flexible plastic, or hard acrylic)
- What size and shape of teeth are best for you? (match old/existing or new/different)
- Which shade of teeth do you want? (matching or brighter)
- Which color of gums will look best? (determined by existing factors)
Compare these dentures: note variations in tooth shade, tooth shape, and gum shade. Getting these details right = a natural looking denture
Don’t worry if you are confused by the many choices available for dentures. Our dentists have years of experience in making natural looking dentures. Therefore, we will work with you to pick the teeth that look the best for your mouth.
We will make some of the planning decisions for your new denture based on your existing mouth. In addition, we encourage you to bring pictures of your earlier teeth or of smiles that you want to emulate.
After we have made these initial decisions, we will take an impression of your mouth. Using stock impression trays, we will create stone models of your existing dentition. Then, we will send these models to our local lab to begin the next steps.
Appointment 2: Final Impressions and Bite Registration
At the lab, the technicians use your models to make custom impression trays and bite rims specifically for your mouth. We use these devices to get a more detailed image of how your mouth looks and functions.
Thanks to our long time relationship with a local lab we know exactly what to send to get a good product back. Also, we count on them to provide a good product and discuss difficult cases with us.
The lab technicians will meet with our dentist and the patient at the lab if we have questions about color or fit.
We are fortunate to have Sherer Dental Lab a few blocks from our office. The technicians there will work with us to make sure patients are happy with their dentures. It takes teamwork to get every step right.Dr. Bill Cranford
Why do you need custom impression trays?
A custom impression tray is made specifically to fit your mouth and will capture the exact contours of your arches. Our stock impression trays capture hard tissue (teeth) well; however, we need custom trays to get a superior impression of your soft tissue (gums).
Using your new custom impression trays, we take a final impression with a high quality impression material so that we can see every bump and crevice in your mouth. Without a high quality final impression, your denture would not fit properly. It may be loose or have pressure points that could cause inflammation in your gums.
What does a bite rim do?
A bite rim is a ledge of wax that will replicate where the edges of your upper and lower denture teeth will be. We also use bite rims to take your bite registration. This gives the dentist and the lab an accurate model of the way that your maxilla (upper teeth) and mandible (lower teeth) relate to each other.
With the bite rim, we mark your mouth’s unique relationship between maxilla and mandible. We also mark the mid-line of your face/teeth.
We use this to determine where the teeth will be in your denture. How much will show when you smile? How much support does your cheek need from your teeth?
We then send these new models with accurate bite registration back to the lab. From the new models and bite registration we communicate to the lab technician the exact qualities of your mouth and the shape your denture should take.
Appointment 3: Wax Try in
The lab uses your new models and the teeth we have picked out to create a wax denture for you to try in your mouth.
This wax denture will be an exact replica of your final denture. Your denture teeth will be set in wax that is contoured in the shape of your gingiva. The final denture teeth will be set permanently in hard acrylic.
By using wax for the try in, we are still able to make changes to the look and feel of your denture.
We will also make sure that your bite is normal and comfortable. Also, we want your denture to be in balanced occlusion with the rest of your mouth, meaning that all the teeth hit evenly.
This wax model should fit well and look good. However, if there are any problems with the try in we will send it back to the lab and bring you back for another wax try in until its perfect.
Once the dentist and patient approve the wax try in, we will send it back to the lab and get it processed.
Appointment 4: Delivery and Adjustments
The lab replaces the wax in your denture with specialized acrylic. The technician then contours and polishes the newly processed denture. The lab then sends the finished denture back to us.
The next appointment will be the delivery of your denture. We try your denture in to make sure it looks the way you want and that it fits well. Tell us about any pressure points or areas that do not fit well. We can adjust your denture right there until it fits properly.
Quality denture looks natural and fits tightly in patient’s mouth.
Together, we will discuss what you need to do to keep your denture looking and feeling good. To make you comfortable and check fit, we rehearse taking the denture in and out. We respond to your concerns until we know that you are happy with your new smile.
Appointment 5: Management and Upkeep
Even though you have a denture with artificial teeth, you still need to come in for annual visits. At your appointment, we clean your denture., evaluate the fit, and check for structural or esthetic damage. We will also examine the underlying tissue for any signs of inflammation or infection.
Dentures typically last 5 to 7 years. With regular maintenance and good care, your denture may last 12 to 16 years. Some of our patients still wear denture that we made 25+ years ago.
Our dentists will continue to work at maintenance visits to keep you happy with your smile. This includes adjusting pressure points to keep you out of pain. If your mouth changes, we can reline your denture to make it fit again. We can repair broken or damaged dentures.
Over our years of practice, we have made numerous patients happy with their natural looking dentures. Call Cranford Dental today at 803-324-7670 or contact us online to get started with a denture that will work well for you.
The materials and technique for making dentures has improved greatly over the past 40 years. Our dentists are pleased to practice in a time when “no one but your dentist knows for sure.”
We look forward to helping you love your smile!