If a patient is experiencing persistent pain and tightness in the jaw, temporomandibular joint disorders, often referred to as TMD, may be to blame. While people with this condition typically have similar symptoms, there are several different reasons why a person might develop an issue with the TMJ. One of the most common contributors to…
Do General Dentists Fit Patients With Dentures?
There are many reasons to visit general dentists, especially as one ages. For example, though teeth may seem fine currently, dentures could be required sooner rather than later. People may end up needing dentures for a variety of reasons, such as extensive tooth decay or an injury that causes trauma to the mouth. The age, lifestyle and genetics of a person can contribute to the need for dentures.
Important questions for dentists
There are several kinds of dentures, just as there are many kinds of dental professionals. Taking the time to discuss partial or full dentures with dentists can open up new options for patients. When deciding whether to be fitted for dentures, there are a few important questions to ask.
Are tooth extractions required?
Sometimes teeth are so badly damaged from bacteria, infections or trauma that they must be removed from the mouth before dentures can be fitted. Patients are recommended to tell the dentist about all kinds of tooth pain experienced, as well as sudden changes in the texture and condition of the gums. Loose teeth can be an indicator of decay as well. These can all be signs that teeth need to be extracted. Some dentists are able to extract teeth, but in certain cases the patient may need the services of an oral surgeon.
Which dentists specialize in making dentures?
Some dentists choose to study to become prosthodontists, which denotes a specialty in dentistry for reconstruction and restoration. If the general dentist does not feel skilled or qualified to fit a certain patient with dentures, then the patient may be referred to a prosthodontist for treatment.
Prosthodontists can work with a general dentist to address questions regarding particular materials and the final look of the dentures. However, many general dentists are capable of fitting dentures, so it can be beneficial to ask if the dentist who performs regular checkups and cleanings on a patient is able to also handle issues regarding dentures.
How long does it take to get dentures?
Expect to visit the general dentist and possibly a prosthodontist several times for denture fittings. Sometimes immediate dentures can be fitted, but often multiple appointments are needed to assess the patient and make sure that the dentures fit correctly. There are multiple criteria that can affect the number of appointments required:
- The dental condition of the patient and whether tooth extractions are needed
- The overall health of the patient, such as whether they have any diseases or disorders
- The financial expectations of the patient, which can affect the time and materials used
Responsible and experienced dentists should go over denture options with patients and answer any questions. It is important that patients know what to expect from the new dentures and how wearing a set may affect their lifestyle.
Patients who may be in need of dentures often have many questions about the process. Careful research and thoughtful consultation with general dentists experienced in the fitting of dentures can resolve issues.
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