Complete Upper and Partial Lower Dentures
Full Upper and Part Lower Dentures
Dentures that replace the teeth of a completely toothless upper jaw and a partially toothless lower jaw.
People who have had the miss fortune to loose some of their lower dentition in addition to all of their upper dentition often just request the construction of the upper denture, as the missing lower teeth are often at the back and "the gaps" cannot be seen. It is very important to understand that the replacement of missing lower teeth with lower dentures is vital.
The Full Upper denture is usually made out of acrylic (plastic) material and the Part Lower Denture can be made out of plastic,chrome cobalt (metal) or flexible nylon material.
Initial assessment: Prior to commencement the Dental Prosthetist will take a health and dental history and obtain a reason for presenting. This includes answering a few questions concerning the patient's general and dental health. The old dentures are also examined. This process allows the practitioner to obtain patients expectations, a treatment plan and a prognosis. Often a quotation of fees is given and alternative treatments and the method of payment are discussed. If agreement is reached the next step for the denture treatment is arranged. Commencement of the denture construction follows immediately after the assessment or an alternative appointment time may become necessary.
Primary impressions: An initial impression (imprint) of the upper and lower jaw are made. This involves placing special material (non drip) into an appropriately sized impression tray and placing it into the mouth. Once to the upper jaw and once to the lower jaw. The reason for this procedure is to produce an initial model of the toothless upper jaw and the partially toothless lower jaw in order to produce specially fitting trays, referred to as "special trays". These trays will later be produced by the dental technician in the laboratory.
Secondary impressions: Another lot of impressions is taken in the specially prepared "special trays" using different (usually non drip) material. The reason for this procedure is to obtain a more accurate representation of the mouth.
Bite Registration: Both "bite blocks" (wax rims resembling a denture shape) previously prepared in the laboratory, are placed into the patients mouth and skillfully trimmed and manipulated to obtain the correct contour and length. Special measurements such as: centre, lip length and jaw relation ship will be taken. This procedure will be checked on the next visit for its accuracy. At times the skill of the operator is not enough to get this procedure correct on the first time without the help of a relaxed and responsive patient. Also during this visit, teeth will be selected. This is discussed closely with the patient. The complexion, colour of hair, eyes and shape of the face as well as the remainig lower teeth on the old dentures are all taken into consideration. Once selected the next step will be prepared by the Prosthetist in his laboratory.
Try in: The teeth selected during the previous visit are now presented to the patient set into the bite rims. Like dentures made out of wax with the teeth on them will be placed into the patients mouth. The Partial Lower denture may already have clasps attached to the wax rim. Initially the practitioner will check all necessary dimensions as well as the previously taken bite registration. If all looks well then the patient is reminded of the purpose of this visit and handed or pointed to a mirror where the patient can check the appearance. It is a good idea to bring a trusted friend or a member of the family to give a second opinion. This visit is very important as generally the appearance cannot be changed when the denture is finished.
New denture insert: The dentures are now ready and the wax has been replaced with highly polished and characterised acrylic that resembles human gingival tissue (gums). After insertion, all dimensions and the fit is checked once again and the patient is shown the finished dentures in a mirror. Instructions concerning the care of gums, remaining teeth and dentures are given at length and the patient expectations are discussed. Patient is instructed to persevere with the new dentures but not over persevere and encouraged to return for a check visit in a week or earlier if necessary.
Check visit: During this visit the patient tells the Dental Prosthetist his/her problems (if any) with the new dentures . The mouth and dentures are then thoroughly checked and if necessary adjustment to a dentures is made. Once again the patient is coached with what to expect and reminded to return for further adjustments if necessary.
Note: There are circumstance where this process described above may not be used. The Dental Prosthetist may decide on a totally different technique he considers more appropriate for a particular patient.