No, a dental prosthetist is qualified to treat patients directly without a referral. Sometimes GPs or dentists may refer patients for treatment.
The tissues and underlying bones in the mouth are constantly changing, though the rate of change varies from individual to individual. This means that dentures may need to be adjusted, relined or replaced entirely to ensure a good and comfortable fit. Typically dentures will fit well for 5-6 years, and your dental prosthetist will advise when a change is necessary.
Worn out dentures can cause permanent damage of the tissues and bones of the mouth, as well as discomfort for the wearer. Some possible effects are: difficulty chewing and resulting poor digestion and dietary problems, headaches, sunken face, over-closing of the jaw, irritated and soft gums, and premature bone loss.
The price is different for each type of denture, and there is no one procedure that suits every individual. A consultation (free at Esteem Dental Care) is required so the dental prosthetist can discuss with you the best treatment plan for your situation.
Modern technological advances means your dentures can be personalised to suit you and look just like your natural teeth. Every patient will be catered for to ensure that they are happy with the appearance of their new dentures.
Eating with dentures will require practice and patience, but with time you will be able to bite and chew naturally. We advise you to avoid hard foods initially and introduce more solid food into your diet in time. It also helps to take small bites and chew gently so the dentures do not come off. Also, food may taste different initially when you are still getting used to the denture, but flavours will soon return to normal.
Teeth are very important in speech, and the contours of your denture may have made a difference to your mouth. You may notice some difficulty in enunciating your words initially, but with time your tongue, lips and cheeks will get used to the new contours. We recommend reading aloud to help your mouth find the new positions needed for correct pronunciation.
It is important to clean your dentures daily to reduce the build-up of plaque and stains. But unlike with your natural teeth, cleaning dentures must be done with a non-abrasive cleaner and a soft bristle brush. Be careful not to use toothpaste as it can cause microscopic scratches that allow bacteria and stains to become more readily attached to your denture. Your dental prosthetist can provide you with cleaning materials, and can also clean your dentures in an ultra-sonic cleaner to restore them to their original state.
It seems to be the prevalent stereotype that dentures should be taken out at night and put into a glass of water! But this really depends on your situation, so it is important to discuss this with your dental prosthetist.
This varies from case to case, so your dental prosthetist will advise you on how often you should have your dentures checked. It is important that your dentures fit well, so it is best to monitor any changes to the fit or to your gums. Of course, if your dentures crack or break you should call your dental prosthetist immediately. Dentures can usually be repaired quite quickly and easily with the right equipment. You should never try to repair them yourself, as this may compromise the quality of the denture.
Drugs, including over the counter medication, can reduce the amount of saliva you produce (causing dry mouth), and so adversely affecting the fit and comfort of your denture. If needed, a saliva substitute may be used to increase comfort, so it is important to tell your dental prosthetist of any medication you are taking.