A denture is a removable replacement for missing teeth and surrounding tissue. Complete dentures are used when all the teeth are missing. Partial dentures are used when some natural teeth remain.
Complete dentures can be either conventional or immediate. Made after teeth have been extracted and the gum tissue has begun to heal, the conventional denture is ready for placement in the mouth about 2-3 months after teeth have been removed.
Unlike conventional dentures, immediate dentures are made in advance and can be positioned as soon as the teeth have been extracted. As a result, the wearer does not have to be without teeth during the healing period. However, bones and gums shrink over time, especially during the healing process, and, generally, should only be considered a temporary solution until a complete denture can be made.
A removable partial denture consists of replacement teeth attached to a gum-colored base, which is connected by metal framework that holds the denture in the mouth. Partial dentures are used when one or more natural teeth are missing. Not only does a partial denture fill in the space created by missing teeth, but it prevents other teeth from changing position.