Getting Used To Dentures

Dentures are a great way to restore the look of your natural smile, but they take some getting used to. Our Grand Rapids, MI dentures dentist offers partial and complete dentures to help you talk and eat normally again.

While they will feel different at first, you’ll soon adjust to the look and feel of wearing dentures in your everyday life. Here’s what Dr. Ritzema wants you to know about your first 30 days with your new dentures. Please contact our dental office today with any additional questions or concerns regarding your dentures.

Getting Used to Dentures

For the First 24 Hours

Like the name suggests, immediate dentures can be worn immediately after extracting teeth. If we need to extract teeth, one of our dentists may prescribe you pain relievers and antibiotics to take as directed while the site heals. It’s important that you don’t remove your dentures during the first 24 hours so the gums have a chance to heal. Your full dentures act much like a bandaid during your first day, which is why you’ll even need to wear your dentures to bed.

After the 24 hours, we highly recommend removing your dentures before going to sleep. That way, your gums have a chance to rest and stay healthy. Your gums were never designed to be covered by dentures 24/7, which is why you need to give them breaks.

Since the extraction sites will be sore, we recommend eating soft foods like mashed potatoes or macaroni and cheese.

For the First 2 Weeks

Once 24 hours have passed since tooth extraction, you’ll need to return to our office so our Grand Rapids, MI dentist can remove your dentures. It’s normal to develop sore spots during the first few days of wearing dentures. You may also have more saliva.

Gum tissue contracts as it heals. For this reason, you may need to visit our office several times so your dentures fit comfortably. If you experience dental discomfort or pain while eating, we recommend supplementing meals with Ensure or another protein-rich drink.

After the First 2 Weeks

It takes time for your gums, cheeks, and tongue to adjust to wearing an oral appliance. However, after a couple of weeks have passed, you’ll notice fewer sore spots in your mouth and less saliva. Don’t hesitate to call our office if you need your dentures adjusted. We’d be more than happy to set up a time for you.

It’ll take some time for you to get used to eating and talking with dentures. If you lisp while you talk, we recommend reading aloud from your favorite book and keeping a running list of words that give you difficulty. The more you speak with your dentures, the easier it’ll become over time.

Caring for Your Dentures

Take care of your denture teeth like you would natural teeth. For example, you’ll need to brush your dentures twice a day to remove plaque and prevent bad odor. Submerge your full or partial dentures in water or denture cleanser when you’re not wearing them so they don’t dry out.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 47.2% of Americans age 30 and older have periodontal disease. Don’t be one of them. If you’re wearing full dentures, you won’t have any natural teeth left. However, it’s still important to keep your gums healthy by brushing them twice a day.

At Complete Health Dentistry, our Grand Rapids, MI dentures dentist can help you get your smile back. If you want to learn more about how dentures can improve your life, make an appointment by calling (616) 458-7267.

Foods With Dental Implants

Do you miss eating steak or biting into an apple without pain? What if we told you there was a way to replace missing teeth so you could continue eating your favorite foods?

Our dental implant dentists in Grand Rapids, Michigan may recommend you for the dental implant procedure if you have enough bone density in your jaw and healthy gums. Please contact us with any questions you may have.

Continue reading to learn how you could enjoy more foods with dental implants.

What are dental implants?

dental implant is an artificial tooth root (typically made of titanium) that’s placed in your jaw to later support a crown. Dental implants look and feel like natural teeth so you can eat, smile, and talk with confidence. Unlike dentures, dental implants are embedded in your jawbone so they’ll stay in place.

What happens when you are missing a tooth?

As soon as your body senses a missing tooth, it’ll start to absorb the minerals in your jawbone to use elsewhere. For this reason, it’s important to schedule an appointment with our dental implant dentists as soon as you lose a tooth. The sooner you see us, the sooner we can prevent the other teeth from tilting toward the empty space.

Can missing teeth cause health problems?

We practice complete health dentistry, which means we focus on the relationship between oral health and the rest of the body. For this reason, we help patients maintain healthy teeth and gums so they’re able to eat nutritious foods. Eating should never be painful. If you’re only able to eat soft foods, you are restricting what nutrients you’re getting on a daily basis. Call our dental implant dentists today to learn about your tooth replacement options.

How do dental implants improve chewing?

Wish you could eat your favorite foods again without pain? Schedule an appointment with one of our dental implant dentists to learn if you’re a candidate for the dental implant procedure. Unlike other tooth restorations, dental implants stay in place because they are embedded in your jawbone. This means that you won’t have to worry about your dental implants slipping when you eat steak or other tough-to-chew foods. In other words, dental implants are as stable as natural teeth and will allow you to eat an unrestricted diet.

Can I eat normally after dental implants?

You’ll need to eat soft foods (think yogurt and mashed potatoes) while you heal from the dental implant procedure. However, once the entire dental implant process is complete you’ll be able to continue eating your favorite foods. Dental implants are stable while chewing because they’re placed in the jawbone like natural tooth roots.

Dr. Nick Ritzema DDS and Dr. Alexandra Maring DDS are both dedicated to helping you restore your smile after tooth loss. A tooth implant not only improves chewing, but can boost your self-confidence when you smile and talk. To request an appointment with one of our dental implant dentists in Grand Rapids, MI, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.

Signs You Need Dental Implants

Tired of dentures that slip? A dental implant is an artificial tooth root (typically made of titanium) we place in your jaw to anchor a crown. Dental implants replace missing teeth so you can smile with confidence after tooth loss. A tooth implant can also improve your oral health so you can avoid further tooth loss, jawbone deterioration, gum disease, and cavities. A dental implant dentist will be able to recognize the signs you need permanent tooth replacement.

To schedule your consultation with a dental implant dentist, call (616) 458-7267 today.

Why You May Need Dental Implants

You’re considering a Dental Bridge

Like the name suggests, a dental bridge “bridges” the gap left by a missing tooth. A bridge is comprised of an artificial tooth anchored by crowns on healthy adjacent teeth. In order to place a dental bridge, your dentist would have to remove healthy enamel from teeth on both sides of the gap. Once enamel is removed, it can never be replaced. We may recommend dental implants over bridges because they let you keep as much natural tooth structure as possible.

Atooth implant is sturdier than a bridge because it’s anchored to your jaw. This added stability helps you smile, talk, and eat with confidence.Dental implants are also long-lasting, which means you’ll be able to enjoy a beautiful healthy smile for years to come.

You Wear Dentures

Dentures sit on top of the gums and don’t prevent jawbone deterioration. Atooth implant, on the other hand, will exert pressure your jawbone needs to stay healthy. If you don’t get a tooth implant, you will eventually lose jawbone tissue and experience facial collapse. Once the jawbone deteriorates, it’ll become harder to refit dentures so you can chew without pain.

Unlike dentures, dental implants never slip. This means that you can eat, talk, and smile like you did before tooth loss. While denture teeth have to be submerged in water or denture cleanser when they aren’t in your mouth, implants can be cared for like natural teeth.

You Lost One or More Teeth

After extraction, your dentist may recommend a tooth implant to help you maintain good oral health. Otherwise, your jaw will start to deteriorate and eventually alter the shape of your face. The best time to get a tooth implant is immediately after extraction.

Your teeth are held in place by roots and adjacent teeth. This means that when you lose a tooth, nearby teeth are likely to tilt toward the open space, loosen, and eventually fall out. Fortunately, dental implants support nearby teeth so you can continue smiling with confidence.

Dental implants help you avoid:

  • Bone loss in jaw
  • Facial collapse
  • Further tooth loss

 

  • Ill-fitting dentures
  • Feeling self-conscious about your smile

Dr. Nick Ritzema DDS and Dr. Alexandra Maring DDS can help you explore your tooth replacement options (including dental implants) during your next appointment. To schedule a consultation with one of our dental implant dentists in Grand Rapids MI, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.

Look Younger With Implants

Do you feel self-conscious of missing teeth? Ask your dentist if you’re a candidate for the dental implant procedure. A dental implant is an artificial tooth root (typically made of titanium) that supports a crown. Continue reading to learn how more and more patients are discovering the benefits of dental implant surgery, especially for their confidence.

Prevent Further Tooth Loss

If you’ve lost your teeth due to aging, injury, or illness, call our dentists as soon as possible to explore your tooth replacement optionsDental implants can help you look years younger by filling the gaps in your smile and preventing further tooth loss. Without a tooth implant, surrounding teeth will tilt toward the open space and eventually fall out. Dental implants replace missing teeth so you can look younger than your chronological age.

Skip Dentures

There are many ways in which we age. However, simply shrugging off poor teeth as part of aging can undermine more than your looks. People who wear dentures for years will eventually experience facial collapse once their lower jaw deteriorates enough. When this happens, it becomes difficult to refit dentures so patients can chew without pain.

Even well-fitting dentures will occasionally slip when you cough, sneeze, laugh, or even smile. The abrupt movement causes dentures to shift. While this can be discreetly corrected by gently biting down and swallowing, many of our patients would prefer to avoid this hassle altogether. You never have to worry about slipping dentures when you choose dental implants.

Improve Oral Health

Dental implants affect more than just the appearance of your smile—they also improve oral health. As soon as you lose a tooth, you are at risk for further tooth loss, jawbone deterioration, and facial collapse. Facial collapse not only changes the shape of your face, but makes you look older. Fortunately, your dental implant dentist can help you find a solution that works for your smile.

It’s never too late to improve your oral health. If you’ve already lost jawbone tissue, ask your dentist if you’re a candidate for a bone graft. That way, you’ll have sufficient jawbone tissue to stabilize your dental implants.

Boost Confidence

If you’ve ever felt self-conscious about missing teeth, you owe it to yourself to schedule an appointment with your dental implant dentist. Many of our patients report feeling more confidence after getting dental implants. Unlike dentures, you don’t have to worry about avoiding certain foods or learning how to speak around a bulky oral appliance. Dental implants look and function like natural teeth.

A smile conveys confidence and optimism, which is important for forming good first impressions. How people respond to you often forms the basis of personal relationships and business partnerships. You owe it to yourself to show the world the best side of you.

Our dental implant dentists provide tooth replacement options like dental implants to help you smile with confidence after tooth loss. To schedule an appointment with one of our Grand Rapids dentists, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.

Dental Implants FAQ

Your dentist may recommend dental implants to replace missing teeth. Not only do dental implants prevent further tooth loss, but they also provide more stability than other tooth replacement options.

Continue reading to get the facts on the dental implant procedure. For more information, call our office to set up a consultation with one of our dental implant dentists.

What are dental implants?

A dental implant is a prosthetic tooth root (typically made of titanium) used to anchor a crown. If you have missing teeth, your dentist may recommend dental implants to restore the appearance and function of your smile.

What are the health benefits of dental implants?

Dental implants are embedded deep in your jaw to give you more stability than other tooth replacement options. Unlike dentures, you won’t have to worry about your dental implants slipping while you eat, talk, or smile. Instead, your tooth implant will look and feel natural.

Dental implants stimulate jawbone tissue so it doesn’t deteriorate over time. Otherwise, you may experience further tooth loss and even facial collapse. Facial collapse not only changes the shape of your face, but makes it difficult to continue wearing dentures.

Your body is able to sense tooth loss and absorbs the minerals in your jawbone so it can be used elsewhere. To your body, there’s no reason to have a jawbone if there are no teeth to support. Dental implants fix this problem by giving your jawbone tissue the stimulation it needs to be healthy.

What can I expect during the dental implant process?

The dental implant process takes several months. Once your dentist has determined you are a candidate for dental implant surgery, they’ll schedule the procedure. During your first appointment with us, we’ll give you anesthesia before inserting the implant into your jawbone.

Over the next several months, the tooth implant will fuse to your jaw in a process called osseointegration. Our dentists will monitor your progress to make sure you’re healing properly. Once the implantation is complete, you’ll return to our office to have the dental crown placed over the implant. A dental implant crown gives you the look and function of a natural tooth.

Am I a candidate for dental implants?

To be a candidate for the dental implant procedure, you must have healthy gum and jawbone tissue. However, if you don’t have sufficient jawbone tissue for the procedure, your dental implant dentist may recommend a bone graft.

How long do dental implants last?

After the dental implant procedure, you’ll need to continue your oral hygiene routine by brushing your teeth twice a day. We also recommend flossing once daily to remove dental plaque hiding in between teeth and along the gum line.

If we find plaque and tartar buildup during your next appointment, we may recommend you add a fluoride mouthwash to your daily routine. A tooth implant can last decades when given proper care.

Our dentists will be able to help you explore your tooth replacement options, including dental implant surgery. To schedule your appointment with one of our Grand Rapids dentists, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.

Getting Used To Dentures

If you’re missing several teeth, ask our dentist if dentures are right for you. Complete and partial dentures are able to replace missing teeth so you can eat, smile, and talk with confidence. Continue reading to learn how to get used to your new dentures.

1. Practice reading out loud.

It’s not uncommon for patients to slur some of their words after getting dentures. It’ll take some time for your tongue, cheeks, and gums to get used to speaking around your new false teeth. Over time, you’ll get used to speaking with denture teeth and the lisp will disappear. In the meantime, we recommend reading out loud to practice pronunciation. If you have trouble saying certain words, write them down to practice them more in depth later.

Many patients are able to speak better after getting dentures. This is because your teeth play a vital role in being able to say certain sounds. If you don’t believe us, trying reading some of these words out loud. How many times do your lips or tongue touch your teeth while speaking? Getting dentures will help improve your speech so you can feel more confident in conversations with friends, family, and co-workers.

2. Know how to correct slipping dentures.

Sudden movements (like sneezing) can cause your dentures to slip. To discretely correct slipping dentures, bite down gently and swallow. Even the best dentures slip from time to time, especially when you sneeze, cough, laugh, or even smile.

If you notice your dentures slipping more than usual, schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. It’s possible that your dentures may need to be adjusted for a more comfortable fit. Our dentist always makes sure your dentures fit well before leaving our office.

3. Eat carefully.

When you start wearing new dentures, you’ll want to eat soft foods or foods cut into bite-sized pieces. For example, many patients choose to eat mashed potatoes after being fitted for dentures. As you get used to eating with dentures, you may start to gradually include tougher or chewier foods. Remember that wearing complete or partial dentures takes some getting used to, so you’ll want to ease your way into eating your normal diet.

4. Never let your dentures dry out.

Take care of your denture teeth like you would natural teeth. While natural teeth are constantly bathed in saliva, you’ll need to keep your dentures in a glass of water or denture cleaner when they aren’t in your mouth. Your dentures will crack and warp if you let them dry out.

5. Use a denture adhesive.

A denture adhesive will help your false teeth stay in place while eating, talking, and smiling. If you aren’t sure what brand to get, our dentist will be more than happy to recommend products that have worked well for other patients. Denture adhesives are sold in most supermarkets and come in either a cream or strip.

Dr. Ritzema DDS and his team are dedicated to helping patients maintain beautiful healthy smiles with dentures and other tooth replacement options. To schedule your appointment with our Grand Rapids dentist, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.

Reasons To Get A Dental Bridge

After tooth extraction, your dentist will recommend you fill the space with a dental bridge or implant. If you have recently lost a tooth, it’s best to fill the gap in your smile before nearby teeth start to tilt toward the open space. If left untreated, a missing tooth can make it more difficult to eat, speak, and feel confident. A dental bridge is a false tooth anchored on both sides with crowns on natural teeth or implants. For more information, schedule an appointment with your dentist.

1. Smile with Confidence

tooth bridge looks and feels natural so you can smile with confidence. Many of our patients report feeling more confidence after getting tooth bridges to restore their smiles. If you have ever felt self-conscious about your smile, you owe it to yourself to schedule an appointment with your dentist. During your consultation, you’ll be able to explore tooth replacement and smile makeover options.

2. Eat Your Favorite Foods

Is it painful to bite or chew food? Eating shouldn’t have to be something that causes you pain on a regular basis. Schedule an appointment with your dentist to discuss getting a dental bridge. A dental bridge restores your smile so you can maintain a balanced diet.

Teeth are held in place by roots and surrounding teeth. This means that when you lose one tooth, you risk further tooth loss. If you have recently lost a tooth, the pain may be from teeth tilting toward the open space in your smile. You may also have sore gums from plaque buildup in the empty socket.

3. Speak without a Lisp

If you have lost several teeth, you may speak with a lisp or have difficulty pronouncing certain words. This is because your teeth are partly responsible for helping you form words. To see what we mean, try reading out loud to see how many times your lips or tongue come in contact with your teeth. A front teeth bridge helps resolve speech issues caused by tooth loss.

4. Maintain Your Face’s Natural Shape

Your jawbone will start to deteriorate without pressure from tooth roots. If left untreated, jawbone deterioration can lead to further tooth loss and even facial collapse. With each tooth you lose, your risk for facial collapse increases. A dental bridge prevents further tooth loss, so you can maintain good oral health.

5. Prevent Further Tooth Loss

Your teeth are held in place by roots and nearby teeth. This means that when you lose one tooth, nearby teeth start to tilt toward the open space. Teeth that move too much become loose and fall out. If you have recently lost a tooth, we recommend filling the empty space with a fixed dental bridge as soon as possible.

Dr. Ritzema DDS and his team are dedicated to helping you restore your smile after tooth loss with dental bridges and other restorative dentistry services. To schedule an appointment with our Grand Rapids dentist, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.

Benfits Of Dental Implants

If you are missing a few teeth in your smile, you should know that it can affect much more than how people perceive you. Patients who are missing teeth are at increased risk for poor nutrition, tooth decay, and even jaw deterioration.

To prevent serious oral health issues, our Grand Rapids dentists at Complete Health Dentistry will determineif you are a candidate for dental implants or other dental restorations. A dental implant is an artificial tooth root (typically made of titanium) we place in your jaw to later support a crown. Contact us today with any questions you may have about dental implants.

In this blog post, we will go over how dental implants can improve your smile and overall oral health. If you are interested in learning more about the dental implant procedure, call one of our dentists today to schedule a consultation. The health benefits of dental implants include being able to eat a well-balanced diet, as well as preventing tooth decay and further tooth loss.

How Do Dental Implants Work?

A dental implant is a titanium post we place in your jaw to act as an artificial tooth root. After the initial dental implant procedure, this post will fuse to your jawbone during a process called osseointegration. It will take a few months for your jawbone to heal and your dental implant to stabilize. Once your dental implant is firmly rooted in your jawbone, one of our dentists will place the crown over top. This crown will give you the look and function of a natural tooth.

Keeps Teeth in Place and Prevents Cavities

Your teeth are held in place by tooth roots under the surface of your gums and surrounding teeth. This means that when you lose a tooth, you also lose part of what was supporting nearby teeth. Teeth that have nothing to lean against begin to tilt toward the open space and can even become loose over time.

Shifted teeth are also more vulnerable to tooth decay, which can lead to further tooth loss. To prevent further damage to your smile, we recommend consulting with one of our knowledgeable dentists to see if you are a candidate for dental implants.

Maintains Healthy Jawbone Tissue

Tooth roots help stimulate the bone cells in your jawbone. However, when you lose a tooth, your jawbone loses this stimulation and begins to deteriorate. In other words, your jawbone needs pressure from tooth roots in order to remain healthy.

The only way to stop jaw deterioration after losing a tooth is to fill the empty space with a dental implant. However, the longer you wait to start the dental implant process, the more difficult it will be to repair your smile. In severe cases, jawbone loss can lead to jaw shrinkage and facial collapse. Both of these can make you look older than your chronological age, which is why we recommend you check out our blog post on how to look younger with dental implants.

Helps You Eat a Well-Balanced Diet

When you are missing a tooth, it can be difficult eating your favorite foods. When this happens, you may restrict your diet to only those foods that are least painful to eat with the teeth you have left. Sometimes this means patients aren’t able to eat foods rich in the nutrients they need to be healthy.

It’s important to understand that your oral health is part of a larger system. When you are unable to eat nutrient-rich foods, it can have an effect on the bones in your body. It’s not uncommon for people who are missing one or more teeth to suffer from tooth decay and jawbone deterioration resulting from poor diets. Check out another blog post we wrote about how you can enjoy more foods with dental implants.

Whether you need one or several of your teeth replaced, you may want to talk to one of our dentists about dental implant restorationDental implants are a serious commitment, which is why it’s important you have all the facts so you can make an informed decision about your oral health. To learn more, check out our blog post on the 3 signs you need dental implants.

Dr. Nick Ritzema and Dr. Alexandra Maring are dental implant dentists in Grand Rapids, MI. To request an appointment and learn if you’re a candidate for dental implants, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.