Dentures are a type of prosthetic device that is constructed to replace missing teeth. It is said that dentures have been used as far back as the 7th century BC. Sources indicate that the Etruscan civilization from Italy created one of the first dentures. The first dentures that they created consisted of both human and other animal teeth. It was then joined together using gold bands. Later in the 16th century, Japan created its own version of dentures by using wood. Their process consisted of using beeswax to form a mold of a patient's mouth. Based on this impression, wood was intricately carved into dentures to fit specifically to the patient's mouth. Japan later created other variations of the wooden denture using stone and other similar materials of those from the Etruscan civilization.
In 1728, a French physician named Pierre Fauchard created dentures using a metal frame and animal bones. However, it was Alexis Duchâteau who was credited to have created the first porcelain dentures in the late 1700s. Then in 1820, Samuel Stockton began manufacturing dentures that used high-quality porcelain and gold. It was in the late 1800s that dentures became lighter. Specifically, in the 1850s, dentures were now being manufactured and made from Vulcanite. Vulcanite was a chemical process invented by Charles Goodyear to harden rubber.
Today, dentures are made from a variety of materials. Acrylic resin, nylon resin, plastics, and metal are some of the materials used in today's dentures. Dentures come in different types such as complete dentures and partial dentures. Complete dentures replace bother the upper and lower sets of teeth in the mouth. They come in two options, conventional and immediate. Conventional complete dentures are made after teeth have been removed and the gum tissue has healed. It can only be worn after the healing process.
Immediate complete dentures are dentures that are made in advance. It allows patients to wear them even during the healing process. Immediate complete dentures are only intended to be worn temporarily. A patient must be fitted for a conventional denture after the healing process has been completed. It will serve as a permanent solution for the patient's missing teeth.
Partial dentures are similar to complete dentures in that they are also removable. Partial dentures are used to replace one or more missing teeth in a patient's mouth. Partial dentures include both the artificial gum and false tooth that are then fastened to the mouth by a clasp or similar attachment. Dentures are used for many reasons whether it be for functionality or aesthetic reasons. They are made with different materials and can cater to a patient's preferences.