Considering immediate dentures? Anyone can lose a tooth and may wish to replace it. However, aging and poor dental hygiene are primary causes of tooth loss in adults. According to a report by the American College of Prosthodontists, an estimated 178 million Americans are missing at least one tooth. In addition, nearly 40 million Americans are missing all of their teeth. Many individuals over age 65 have no natural teeth left.
Luckily, there is a variety of missing teeth treatment options, and immediate dentures is one of them.
Find out more about immediate dentures, benefits, cost of immediate dentures, alternatives, and what’s the difference between immediate dentures and permanent dentures. Be sure to discuss this teeth replacement option and alternative to dentures with your dentist before deciding which one is right for you.
What Are Immediate Dentures?
Traditional dentures are removable false teeth that can be used to replace your natural missing teeth. After your dentist extracts your teeth, it can take 4 to 6 months before it is time to fit your conventional or permanent dentures. In the meantime, your dentist will use immediate temporary dentures to literally fill the gap.
An immediate denture is a complete or partial denture placed immediately after your dentist extracts your natural teeth. Fitting dentures right away provide an instant teeth-replacement solution for patients who do not wish to go home with missing teeth or are unable to get same-day dental implants. Note that you will need to get your temporary replacement teeth adjusted during the waiting period as your jaw bone shrinks.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Immediate Dentures
As with all missing teeth treatment options, there are benefits and drawbacks of temporary dentures.
Pros of immediate dentures:
- You won’t be left toothless
- Allow you to smile confidently while you wait for your customized dentures
- Reduces bleeding and irritation and help the gum heal after tooth extraction
- Protects your gum from injury or infection
- You’ll be able to chew and speak properly
- Help maintain your facial symmetry
- The cost of immediate dentures may be more affordable for you
Cons of immediate dentures:
- They may be an expensive interim solution as you await your customized permanent dentures
- You may not get an ideal fit
- May move or slip out of place (in case you’re wondering are immediate dentures permanent)
- They don’t look, feel, or function as good as your natural teeth
- It may take some time for you to feel comfortable wearing them
- You may need to have them adjusted from time to time to accommodate jawbone shrinkage caused by teeth extraction
- Adjustments will increase the overall price of getting immediate dentures
- You’ll need to wear immediate dentures for several months until the jawbone is stable and your permanent dentures are finished making
Who Is a Candidate for Immediate Dentures?
Not everyone is a candidate for an immediate denture. It all depends on your needs and the results of your oral exam done by your dentist. For example, you may not need temporary dentures if the missing tooth or teeth are at the inner side or back of your mouth where no one may notice the gaps.
On the other hand, you may be a good candidate for immediate dentures or immediate lower denture if you lost your upper or lower front teeth, or you’re having a full-mouth extraction done.
These temporary replacement teeth may also not be right for people with a strong gag reflex. They can trigger your gag reflex if they shift around and touch the back of your tongue or throat. You can opt for an alternative to dentures altogether after considering these factors.
What Is the Immediate Dentures Procedure?
The process of getting immediate dentures will involve several trips to your dentist.
At your first appointment, your dentist will take x-rays and measurements of your upper and lower jaw. The information is used to create a mold or impressions of your teeth and gum that will be sent to the lab. The lab technicians will use the mold and information, such as the color of your natural teeth, to make a custom partial or complete denture for you to wear immediately following extraction.
Some patients may need to have their tooth or teeth extracted before moving to the next stage.
Immediate denture placement
After extraction, your dentist will fit the immediate dentures to fill the gap of the missing tooth or teeth. Your dentist may instruct you to wear your short-term dentures for about 24 hours after surgery before removing them. The purpose of wearing this denture is to preserve the integrity of your mouth as well as the jaw. You will need to continue wearing them daily until you get your permanent replacement.
Your gum will need to heal properly for about 4 to 6 months or longer before it’s time to fit the permanent dentures. During the healing period, your gum will shrink and jawbone changes will occur. This is normal after tooth extraction.
Relining and adjustments
You will need to go back to your dentist for regular checkups as your doctor monitors the healing process. The interim dentures will also need adjusting and relined several times as your gum and jawbone shrink.
Customizing your permanent dentures
After your mouth is fully healed, your dentist will take several bite impressions (hard imprints) of your jaw and mouth. The lab technicians will use these impressions to customize permanent dentures to fit the exact shape of your mouth.
Fitting the permanent removable dentures
You can look forward to a better fit and increased comfort once your doctor fits them in your mouth. They are more durable and made to last for years compared to immediate dentures. You’ll also be able to chew and speak better. It’s important to note that the permanent dentures placed at the end of your treatment are different from dentures that are permanently held in place by implants.
As for your immediate dentures, it’s okay to keep them as a backup in case you damage or lose the permanent one.
How Long Do Immediate Dentures Last?
Patients planning on getting dentures are often curious about how long do immediate dentures last. These dentures are designed for you to wear between 4 to 6 months until your dentist is ready to fit your permanent dentures. However, interim dentures can last as long as permanent dentures with proper care.
Although not recommended, some people wear them long-term to avoid the cost of permanent dentures. But when you think of the costs of having your dentures frequently adjusted and relined, you may end up paying more in the long run for temporary dentures vs permanent dentures.
Alternative to Immediate Dentures?
Although tooth loss is not uncommon, having missing teeth or even dentures makes people feel self-conscious and less confident about their smile. Some people find dentures uncomfortable to wear and think they make them look or feel old. Perhaps because many individuals associate dentures with the elderly.
But while you’re considering getting immediate dentures, remember there are alternatives that you may find more aesthetically pleasing. Three of the most sought-after alternative teeth replacement treatment options are dental bridges, implant-supported dentures, and dental implants.
A dental bridge (pontic) is another type of false tooth treatment but is an upgrade from dentures. The fake tooth is held in place by a dental crown bonded to your nearby teeth (abutment teeth) on either side. Bridges are usually made from porcelain, are more permanently fixed, and appear more aesthetically pleasing than dentures. The four common types of bridges are traditional, cantilever, Maryland, and implant-supported bridges. The average cost of one pontic is $2,000 – $5,000 for one pontic and a crown for each abutment tooth.
You can opt for implant-supported dental prosthetics to replace one tooth, several teeth in a row, or a full mouth of teeth. Implant-supported dentures are held snugly in place by metal implant posts surgically rooted into your gum or jawbone. This procedure may be more expensive than bridges but less than getting traditional implants. There is also a new technique called “all-on-four” implants that requires only one implant for every four fake teeth. This means you will only need eight implants to support a full set of teeth mounted on dentures.
Implants are fastly becoming the gold standard of tooth replacement and for good reasons. They represent the most permanent teeth replacement option available today. An implant is a tiny metal screw that is planted into your gum or jawbone to take the place of the missing tooth root. It forms a sturdy base for the replacement crown once your gum heals after the implant surgery.
Implants come the closest to natural teeth and will feel and function the same way. You won’t have to worry about implants shifting out of place or falling out like removable dentures. Implants also promote healthy jawbone growth. Although the average cost to replace a missing tooth with an implant is estimated between $3,000 to $4,500, implants can last almost a lifetime with proper care.
How Much Immediate Dentures Cost?
The cost of dentures in Houston Texas or elsewhere will vary depending on the type of materials used to make the temporary fake teeth. Other factors that affect the price are the number of teeth that need replacing and how much your insurance is willing to pay towards the total immediate dentures cost.
In general, prices can range from $600 to $1000 for a single basic, non-premium plate and $1,200 to $2,000 for a full set. Dentures that are made using premium materials, such as metal or mesh liners, can cost $2,000 to $4,000 per plate and $4,000 to $8,000 for a full set. You’ll also need to factor in the cost for periodic denture adjustments while you wait for your permanent dentures.
Your insurance provider will consider various things before deciding how much of the treatment cost they will pay. Be sure to discuss the various missing teeth treatment options with your dentist to help decide what’s best for you. Your dental clinic may even offer payment plans to help you pay for treatment.
Why Choose Voss Dental in Houston Texas
It is important to choose a dentist who has extensive training and experience working with patients needing dentures. Our Houston, TX, dentist at Voss Dental is committed to providing the highest quality of dental care to all patients. Before the procedure, we will do a detailed oral exam and X-rays and show you before and after photos of you with permanent dentures.
Your dentist will discuss your treatment, the cost of dentures in Houston Texas, and payment options. You’re welcome to consider implants or implant-supported dentures. We accept most PPO insurances and offer a financing option to help you pay for treatment. Call 713-322-8811 to schedule an appointment today.