Understanding dentures and denture relines

Dentures can be replacements for missing teeth that can be removed. There are majorly two types of dentures – partial and full dentures. Complete dentures are used when the teeth are missing while partial dentures are used when some of the natural teeth remain.

Full Dentures: Full Dentures can be immediate or conventional. It is made once the teeth are removed and when the gum tissue starts healing. Conventional dentures are ready to be placed in the mouth about eight to twelve weeks after the teeth are removed.

Immediate Dentures: These are made in advance and can be placed immediately, as soon as the teeth are removed. The patient can wear the dentures during the healing period too. It needs to be noted that the bones and gums shrink over time, especially during the healing period, post the removal of the teeth.

Denture Relines: The Procedure

Denture Relines is a simple procedure which can be completed under an hour. The dentist you visit first examines your mouth to assess the level of irritation in the mouth or teeth. If there are serious sores or swelling from poorly fitting dentures, the dentist would recommend the use of a temporary reline while the mouth heals. This allows you to return later to get a permanent reline.

To perform a permanent reline, a dentist first cleans your dentures and removes small amounts of material on the denture plate through sanding. Once the materials are removed, the dentist applies soft or hard relining resin to the dentures. The dentures are placed back in the mouth and the patient is asked to gently bite, so that the impression is made in the resin. Once the resin hardens, the reline is ready!

Soft Relining: Soft relining resin is one of the two optional materials that are used in denture relining. Resin is made of silicone and can create a softer and more comfortable base for the denture. It can be the best choice for people with sensitive or thin gums as there is less chance for irritation that might develop in the future. However, as the material is softer, it can be less durable than the original denture or hard relining resin. When opting for soft relining over hard resin relines, an individual may need more visits to the dentist. Soft relines are a better choice for older patients who might have thinner gums and more advanced recession of gums and other tissues in the mouth.

Hard Relining: Hard relining is standard for denture relining as it can be long-lasting and comfortable for all but not for the most sensitive gums. Hard relining resin is made of acrylic that can be similar to the original acrylic of dentures. If you opt for hard relines, you would only need your dentures relined every one or two years.

However, this cannot be completed on the day of your visit. The dentist can apply a reline and take an impression of the mouth and harden it in just one sitting. But after this, it needs to be then sent to the dental laboratory for further development. When this takes place, you would be without your dentures for some days. But at the same time, this is necessary because you have to ensure that the hard resin fits you perfectly.

Whether you visit your dentist for partial or full dentures or if you need to get denture relines, the initial visit to a dentist is a must as the dentist can check the extent of damage to your natural teeth and then assess the need for partial or full dentures. 

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