Dentures are a very common prosthetic. More than 36 million Americans have no teeth at all, and over 120 million have lost at least one tooth. That means that between full and partial dentures, nearly half of all Americans either have a gap in their smile or are using dentures. For as common as dentures are, you’d like to think that dentists were good at making them.

Unfortunately, they’re not. That’s because most dentists didn’t spend a lot of time learning to make dentures, and many of the techniques they did learn are handed down from the past, when they were developed in an unscientific, trial-and-error way. As a result, dentists often make mistakes when fitting dentures. Here are some of the common ones.

mature woman enjoying a walk in the park

Dentures Don’t Contact Evenly

Unlike natural teeth, dentures need to contact evenly, whether they’re touching opposing dentures or natural teeth. If dentures touch early in one place, they are more likely to dislodge, causing them to flip up. This not only breaks the seal between dentures and gums, it allows saliva and food to get between the denture and gums, which can cause irritation and ruin the seal until the denture gets cleaned.

Dentists need to make sure that they are doing a dynamic fitting process that pays attention to when your teeth and dentures contact at different points to create a more secure fit for your dentures.

Improper Position for Front Teeth

Your front teeth do many things: they bite and help with chewing, they help you speak, and they support your lips. Dentures can’t successfully do these things if the front teeth aren’t in the proper position.

If the front teeth of a denture aren’t in the right place, it can make it hard for you to bite into challenging foods. Perhaps most seriously, having dentures in the wrong position can mean that you either can’t make “s” sounds or you develop a lisp because the teeth can’t create the right space with your tongue.

In addition, if your denture teeth are too far back, they won’t support your lips, which leads to a sunken facial appearance.

Poorly Chosen Denture Edges

The edges of the denture have to extend far enough to provide the surface area your dentures need to create adequate suction so they stay in place. However, the edges of the denture shouldn’t be too far.

Denture edges that extend too far can make you gag. They can block your saliva glands, contributing to dry mouth. Large margins can contact dynamic structures in your mouth like muscles, cheeks, or tongue, and get dislodged. Plus, they can irritate your gums.

Dentures Aren’t the Right Height

Dentures need to replace your teeth in every way, including providing support for the lower third of your face. To do this properly, dentures have to be tall enough to not only replace the lost teeth, but also the lost bone. Dentists often don’t know how to properly gauge this height, so you either end up with dentures that are too tall–which means your mouth can’t fully close around them–or too short–which means that you end up with a more aged and sunken appearance.

Scientific Denture Procedure for the Right Fit

However, not all dentists rely on an old-fashioned approach to denture fitting. Denture dentist Dr. Adam Hahn has studied the FOY® Dentures technique for scientific, instrument-based denture design and fitting.

This approach includes specific approaches that help us avoid these problems, including dynamic border molding to avoid moving structures in the mouth and neuromuscular measurements to make your dentures the right height.

Get Great-Fitting Dentures in Columbia, SC

Are you looking for dentures in Columbia, SC? Don’t work with a dentist who might only know a trial-and-error method for fitting your dentures. Choose a dentist with a scientific approach to dentures, denture dentist Dr. Adam Hahn at Smile Columbia Dentistry. Call (803) 781-9090 today for an appointment.