False teeth don’t have to look like fake teeth.
The technology behind the creation of artificial teeth has improved greatly since our grandparent’s time. Once made of plastic or porcelain, dentures can now be made of lightweight materials that are durable and attractive.
The key to dentures that look natural is to make sure you go to a denturist who knows how to work with these materials, and has experience creating realistic teeth and bases that have a natural and comfortable fit.
How do I pick the perfect false teeth?
When you first start the process of getting dentures, you’ll ‘try on’ several different sizes and colours of false teeth to find the right look for you. Most people’s teeth aren’t perfectly aligned, and don’t have a perfectly uniform colour. If you’re older, or if you’re a lifelong coffee drinker or smoker, perfectly straight or perfectly white teeth can look unnatural. This is especially important if you’re getting partial dentures because you’ll want to make sure your chosen teeth match your natural teeth. Your denturist will help you pick a size, shape, and shade that is perfect for you, and don’t be shy about taking your time to make sure you’re happy with your look.
Another way to make false teeth look real is by making sure the bite lines up naturally. If your teeth don’t come together properly, you won’t be able to chew or speak well, and this is true for natural teeth AND false teeth. Your denturist will take a mold of your existing teeth and gums, then set them in a ‘bite registration’ which is a device to show the denturist and their lab how your teeth fit together. By doing this, the technician creating your dentures will know exactly how your false teeth will fit together once they’re in your mouth, preventing any gaps or misalignments.
Will the base of my dentures look like my gums?
The base of your dentures also contributes to how realistic the appliance will look. Your natural gums have a unique shape, colour, and height. You don’t want the base of your dentures to look like a single-coloured piece of smooth pink plastic, or to expose too much or too little of the teeth. As we age, gums recede a little over time. If your base comes up too high on the teeth, this can make the gum line look unnatural.
Your denturist will help you pick a colour for the base that works with your tooth, lip, and skin colour, then the lab will shape that base to mimic the natural tissue.
Why does the fit of my dentures matter?
Full dentures stay in your mouth using the power of suction, while partial dentures stay on by way of a clip, or brace around existing natural teeth.
For both full and partial dentures, if your appliance is too loose or too large, your lips or cheeks can look puffy, your ability to chew can be affected, and even your speech can seem unnatural. If the fit is too small, your face may look sunken or the dentures may be painful to wear.
Perfecting this fit may take more than one appointment, but the time spent is worth the result.
What else do I need to know about keeping my false teeth looking good?
Once you have perfected the look and fit, proper maintenance is an important step in keeping your dentures looking natural.
Take them out every night to allow your gums to breathe, and follow your denturists instructions about cleaning or soaking your dentures. Never use boiling water, and always use a soft brush.
When crafted with care and attention, artificial teeth can look so real no one would know they’re false. Investing in and caring for a well-made set of dentures will reward you with years of brilliant smiles.