Dentures – San Marcos, TX

Middle-aged woman smiling with dentures while sitting inside

If you are one of the millions of Americans dealing with significant tooth loss, dentures in San Marcos provide a quick, affordable way to get those missing teeth back. They are natural looking tooth replacements that you can take out and put back in. Dentures take some getting used to, but they can provide a wonderful solution for people dealing with the stress of missing teeth. Learn more from the doctor providing full and partial dentures at Rio Vista Dental, Dr. David Earnest, below.

Are You a Candidate for Dentures?

Older man smiling in dental chair

You may be wondering whether or not dentures are right for you. The best way to know is to come into our office for a consultation with Dr. Earnest. He will carefully examine your oral health and pattern of tooth loss before recommending the best treatment option. Typically, candidates are those who are missing teeth, have healthy gums, and are committed to good dental hygiene.

Types of Dentures

Different types of dentures with white background

We have multiple denture options, which allow us to restore various patterns of tooth loss. These solutions include:

Partial Dentures

If you’re missing teeth randomly throughout your smile, we may recommend partial dentures! This tooth replacement allows us to restore the missing gaps in your teeth like putting together the pieces of a puzzle. Partial dentures are artificial teeth attached to a gum-colored base, and they’re usually held in place using metal clasps. The result is that you can enjoy a beautifully complete smile while leaving your remaining natural teeth intact.

Full Denture

We use full dentures to restore the smiles of patients who are missing all or most of their teeth. These lifelike replacements are made possible with a durable, gum-colored resin base attached to artificial teeth. Full dentures rest on top of your gums, using suction to stay in place. Sometimes, they may require denture adhesive to keep them stable.

Implant-Retained Dentures

If you’re looking for the most secure and strong smile, an implant-retained denture is your best option. Dr. Earnest combines dental implants with dentures for the most natural looking and feeling full smile replacement. Dental implants are rooted in the jawbone, which stabilizes your denture, allowing you to eat, speak, and chew with ultimate confidence. Plus, dental implants stimulate your jawbone to prevent it from deteriorating after tooth loss.

How Dentures are Made

A closeup of a top denture being held by a hand

If you plan to get dentures, perhaps you’re curious about how they’re made. It’s certainly fair to ask – you’ll be using them as your new teeth, after all. Still, chances are you don’t know where to find the relevant facts. Fortunately enough, we at Rio Vista Dental can help: below is a summary of the standard denture parts and the process used to make them. By reading it over, you’ll learn “how the magic happens” and get a new respect for your future prosthetics.

What are Dentures Made Of?

A model of a removable denture

Without exception, dentures are made up of two parts: its base and its artificial teeth. Their features are as follows:

  • The Denture Base – A denture’s base is the gum-colored part supporting artificial teeth. Given its coloring, it sits over your gum tissues and blends seamlessly with them. Dental labs typically make one from various materials, but they choose the substance based on the denture type needed.
  • The Artificial Teeth – Per the name, artificial teeth are dentures’ tooth-replacing portions. They’re normally made from resin or porcelain to ensure lifelike results. (However, since porcelain can be abrasive on adjacent teeth, it’s typically only recommended for full dentures.)

The Denture Creation Process

A dental technician working on dentures

Remember, a dentist customizes a denture for a unique patient’s mouth. As such, making each one of the restorations involves a multi-step process. Here’s a brief look at what those steps are:

  • Step 1: The dentist takes an impression of your upper and lower gums. From there, the resulting model is sent to a lab to help create the dentures.
  • Step 2: Once crafted, the lab sends the wax dentures to the dentist/prosthodontist for a fitting. Assuming patient and dentist approval, the restorations are returned to the lab for completion.
  • Step 4: A technician boils the dentures to remove their wax portions. They then place the appliance in a flask to pour plaster. Subsequently, the flask is placed in hot water to melt the dentures.
  • Step 5: The lab worker makes holes in the artificial teeth so new material can attach. A liquid separator is also added to the plaster layer to prevent the acrylic from sticking. The same acrylic is then injected into the flask to replace the wax.
  • Step 6: The worker removes the plaster to reveal the prosthetics. Later, they place the dentures in an ultrasonic bath to remove leftover plaster.
  • Step 7: After cutting away excess acrylic, the technical polishes the restorations
  • Step 8: The patient returns to the office for fitting and final adjustments.

Adjusting to Your New Dentures

An older woman happy with her new dentures

When first wearing dentures, you’ll likely feel some discomfort. That’s normal – you’ll need time to adjust before the prosthetics feel natural. Until then, you may face mild soreness, challenges with eating, and difficulty speaking.

That said, you can speed up the adjustment process. One method is to eat soft foods that don’t require much chewing. Others, meanwhile, include exercising your facial muscles and experimenting with dental adhesives.

Should your discomfort persist, contact our office immediately. There’s a chance your dentures need readjustment in that situation.

The Benefits of Dentures

Man in grey shirt smiling while sitting inside

There are countless benefits of dentures – from their lifelike appearance to their lower upfront cost. That’s why they continue to be a popular tooth-replacement solution decade after decade! While we will dedicate a portion of your consultation to reviewing all of the perks, you can also learn more about the psychological benefits, oral health benefits, nutritional benefits, etc. right here.

Psychological Benefits

Woman in yellow shirt smiling while relaxing at home

Have you been hiding your smile due to missing teeth? If so, then you may have noticed a spike in social anxiety and sadness as a result. Fortunately, dentures allow you to grin with ultimate confidence once more! Since they are custom-made just for you, you can have peace of mind knowing that they will look great, giving you the confidence to laugh, speak, and smile again.

Clearer Enunciation

Woman in white shirt drinking coffee with friend on couch

To form words, your tongue moves against the back of your teeth, creating distinct sounds in the process. As a result, even one missing tooth can make it hard to enunciate clearly. With dentures, we can fill the gaps in your smile or replace an entire arch of missing teeth, which will make it significantly easier to communicate with those around you. Of course, some practice is required (especially in the first few weeks), but you’ll adjust in no time.

Improves Nutrition

Senior couple shopping for produce at the market

If you are missing teeth or don’t have any of your natural teeth left, then you likely have switched to a soft food diet. While convenient, this can negatively impact your oral and overall health due to a lack of vitamin-rich foods on your plate. Don’t worry – dentures are crafted from durable materials that will expand your diet once more. Not only will this make eating more enjoyable, but it will also ensure that you have all of the nutrients you need to stay healthy.

Preserves Oral Health

Senior man smiling outside

In short, tooth loss can negatively impact your oral health in several ways, starting with causing your teeth to move out of alignment. That’s why we encourage our patients not to wait to get dentures. With this restoration, we can fill the gaps in your smile while keeping your teeth in their proper positions. Furthermore, your dentures will bear some of the pressure from chewing, which will help protect your natural teeth from premature wear.

Expands Opportunities

Woman in red dress smiling at office

Countless studies have shown the importance of a great smile in both personal and professional settings. So, if you want to make a great first impression at social events, first dates, job interviews, and the like, it’s crucial that you have a grin you’re proud of. Luckily, dentures can accomplish that! Since they look as great as they function, they can give you the confidence you need to tackle whatever opportunities comes your way.

Denture Aftercare

An elderly man who just received dentures

Without question, dentures will transform your smile’s looks and function. These effects are the entire point of the treatment! Still, your new teeth will only work if given the proper care. Effective dentures, you see, need regular maintenance and a healthy mouth. They’ll only cause you long-term problems otherwise. Luckily, though, Rio Vista Dental has valuable tips on caring for dentures. To learn about them, please keep reading or call our office for details.

Removeable Dentures

Remove After Eating

For starters, remove and rinse your dentures after every meal. This step prevents the buildup of food debris and plaque. As a result, it’ll reduce your odds of oral health issues.

That said, you shouldn’t use hot water for these after-meal rinses. High temperatures can actually warp denture material. Consequently, a hot water rinse could cause your dentures to fit improperly. You’d then need to repair or replace the appliance.

Clean Your Restoration

In addition to post-meal rinses, dentures should be given once-daily cleanings. These sessions would better protect you from gum disease and similar problems.

Dentures are easy to clean once they’re out of your mouth. Just brush them with a soft-bristled toothbrush and some hand or dish soap. (Toothpaste should be avoided, as its abrasiveness can damage denture surfaces.) If you have time, you can then soak them in a denture-cleansing solution so they don’t dry out. Soaked or not, though, remember to rinse the dentures before putting them back in your mouth.

Keep Your Dentures Safe

While durable enough, dentures can be broken. After all, no dental appliance is invincible. Given this fact, it’s best to keep them safe from harm.

One approach to denture safety is to use a towel during cleanings. By placing this cloth beneath the restorations, the former would protect the latter from falls.

Another idea is to keep your dentures away from pets or kids. These groups, left unsupervised, can break the restorations with their roughhousing.

Remove Dentures When You Sleep

Unfortunately, you can’t always wear dentures; they weren’t designed for that. So, take them out before bed and store them nearby. More specifically, please place them in a denture-soaking solution overnight.

The problem is that wearing dentures to bed risks your health. The habit restricts gum circulation, leading to soft-tissue irritation. It could also increase your mouth’s plaque levels and raise your risk of pneumonia.

Notice Changes

Last but not least, you should watch for harmful changes in your dentures and mouth. If you find any,  address them quickly by visiting your local dental practice.

It’s especially crucial to visit your dentist when (or if) your dentures fit poorly or get damaged. Trying to fix them yourself will likely worsen the harm. A dental provider, though, can refit, reline, or even replace the prosthetics.

Understanding the Cost of Dentures

dentist and patient discussing the cost of dentures in San Marcos

We understand that your smile is unique to you, which is why no two dentures are made exactly the same. In fact, your entire denture treatment will be 100% personalized for your unique goals. As such, the cost of dentures can vary greatly between patients based on their individual needs. During your consultation, we’ll go over the various factors that will influence the price of your dentures and give you a personalized estimate. Read on for more important information about the cost of dentures in San Marcos.

Factors That Affect the Cost of Dentures

Man smiling after getting dentures in San Marcos

There are three big factors that influence the cost of dentures, which are:

  • The need for preliminary treatments: Do you need gum disease therapy or a tooth extraction before getting dentures? If so, the cost of these treatments will naturally be added to the final price of your dentures.
  • The quality of materials used: While dentures can be crafted out of a wide variety of materials, we only use the highest-quality products to ensure that your new smile is as durable, comfortable, and lifelike as possible.
  • The type of denture you opt for: We offer different types of dentures, including partials, full dentures, and implant dentures, all of which come at their own price point.

Are Implant Dentures More Expensive?

Digital illustration of an implant denture in San Marcos

Arguably the best option for dentures is an implant denture, which is held in place by metal replacement tooth roots rather than natural suction. However, it is important to keep in mind that this type of denture will initially cost much more time, effort, and money than traditional dentures. You’ll need to factor in the cost of the dental implants, placement surgery, the final restoration, sedation, and potentially preliminary treatments for the final price.

Many patients and dentists alike believe that implant dentures are well worth the extra cost. Thanks to their unique placement directly into your jawbone, implant dentures can improve your health and quality of life. Additionally, with the proper care, dental implants have the potential to last a lifetime. This alone can save you thousands of dollars over the years. When you visit us for your consultation, we’ll determine if you’re a good candidate for implant dentures, review what that process would look like, discuss how implant dentures compare to traditional dentures, and go over all your options for making them affordable. Together, you and your dentist will decide if implant dentures are right for you.

Does Dental Insurance Cover Dentures?

Woman reviewing dental insurance coverage for dentures in San Marcos

Every dental insurance provider covers different restorations and services at different percentages, with different exclusions, exceptions, and other limitations. However, dentures are generally classified as a major dental treatment, which often earns them at least 50% coverage for most dental insurance plans. Our team would be happy to review the details of your policy with you to confirm your coverage, and we’ll always do everything we can to ensure your benefits are being maximized.