Dentures & PartialsWoodbridge, VA

Replacing missing teeth is important for many reasons, including restoring a good quality of life on a daily basis. Missing teeth cause a variety of problems for patients and compromise long-term dental health.

Dr. Joseph Cavallo, DDS, MAGD, provides several options for missing teeth, including dental bridges and affordable dentures in Woodbridge for a custom, comfortable fit. He also provides additional restorative dentistry treatments from his Woodbridge, VA, office.

Dentures & Partials in Woodbridge, VA

Maintain Your Natural Smile with Restorative Dentistry

Dentistry today focuses on restoring and maintaining a patient’s dental health because of the role it plays in overall physical well-being.

Woodbridge dentist Dr. Cavallo places an emphasis on the importance of routine preventive care in keeping your smile healthy and reducing the risks if decay and gum disease. Teeth can become damaged or lost for a variety of reasons, even when a patient is diligent with their oral hygiene routine.

Addressing damaged or missing teeth is necessary for a functional and comfortable smile. We prevent the development of more complex dental problems down the road.

Replacing Missing Teeth

For patients who have lost multiple teeth for any reason, Dr. Cavallo stresses the benefits of prompt replacement to avoid additional dental problems and limited treatment options.

Whenever possible, Dr. Cavallo will recommend the use of dental implants to replace teeth or secure a denture. Dental implants provide a permanent, life-like solution that will reduce bone loss in the jaw and enable patients to eat and speak normally– without daily maintenance! Dr. Cavallo provides complete services and has years of experience helping patients bring back their natural smiles with implant dentistry.

Dr. Cavallo understands the cost concerns that many patients have when it comes to dental care. He will work with you to restore your smile within your budget. In many cases, treatment can be phased across a predetermined timeframe to achieve results that will provide a lifetime of comfortable smiles.

What are Dentures?

Maybe the most well-known dentures are George Washington’s famous false teeth (they weren’t wood, by the way!), but throughout history, man has tried to replace missing teeth. Archeological digs from as far back as the 7th century BC have found partial dentures made with human and animal teeth.

A denture is a removable replacement for missing teeth and surrounding tissues. They can be full (replacing all the teeth on either the upper or lower jaw) or partial. Partial dentures are sometimes called bridges.

Complete dentures are called conventional, which actually could be called “permanent,” and are placed from two to three months after tooth extraction. Another term you may have heard is “immediate dentures,” but those are simply temporary dentures that are used while your gums heal and your conventional dentures are being fabricated.

What are the Benefits of Dentures?

Some people wonder just what dentures would do for them beyond being able to chew regular foods. Well-fit dentures with Dr. Cavallo go beyond those benefits. They…

  • Improve the ability to chew and bite properly.
  • Allow the patient to eat healthy hard foods such as nuts and fruit.
  • Improve the wearer’s self-confidence and self-image.
  • End the slurred consonant sounds created by missing teeth.
  • Improve the wearer’s facial structure.
  • Keep remaining teeth from moving (partial dentures).

Who is an Ideal Candidate for Dentures?

Full dentures require the patient to be missing all of his or her teeth. This could involve removing the last few remaining natural teeth, as they are typically badly decayed. It’s best if the person has not been missing their teeth for a long period of time, as they probably would have lost some jawbone mass by then.

If a patient has some remaining healthy teeth, Dr. Cavallo can place partial dentures that can be attached to the natural teeth. There aren’t any health limitations to a person receiving dentures.

What’s the Difference Between Full & Partial Dentures?

Obviously, if you’re already missing all your teeth, a full denture is in order. Full dentures replace the entire span of teeth. Often, if poor hygiene and gum disease have run their course, a person missing most of his or her teeth has to have the remaining teeth extracted due to decay within those teeth.

When this is the case, the gums are allowed to heal before the full dentures are fabricated and placed. Full dentures are held in place through pressure provided by the tongue and cheeks and suction created onto the gums. Some people use adhesive to add stability, but Dr. Cavallo believes expertly fit dentures shouldn’t require that.

If you have any remaining teeth that are healthy enough to be saved, partial dentures offer a better solution. This is because we can use those natural teeth as anchor points for partial dentures. Partial dentures are commonly referred to as “bridges” and can be fixed or removable.

They consist of replacement teeth attached to a pink, gum-colored plastic base. In a removable partial, the denture is connected to a metal framework that holds the denture in place but also allows it to be removed. When fixed, the partial denture is anchored permanently to crowns on the adjacent natural teeth.

How are Dentures Made?

The entire process of getting dentures, particularly full dentures, usually takes from two to three months. This involves many fittings. In many cases, the first step in the denture process is to remove badly decayed teeth. So that you’re able to chew while your gums heal, Dr. Cavallo makes an immediate denture.

After your gums have healed, this is the process Dr. Cavallo follows:

  • Your jaws are measured for the relationship between the upper and lower jaw and the space between them. A series of impressions are taken.
  • From those impressions, we make what you could think of as “demo dentures” out of wax or plastic. These are made in the exact shape and position of your conventional dentures but are used to check color, shape, thickness, fit, and function.
  • Once Dr. Cavallo and you agree that you like the fit and structure, final impressions are made for your final denture. These are sent to the dental lab for fabrication.
  • When the dentures are finished, Dr. Cavallo will test them for fit and make further adjustments. From there, we will probably make a few more minute adjustments as you get used to wearing your new dentures.

How Long Do Dentures Last?

Complete dentures usually last from five to seven years. At some point, full dentures usually need to be relined, rebased, or remade. This is because your underlying gum tissues and jawbone change over time. Dr. Cavallo will have the denture base refit, or a new base may be created using the existing false teeth.

The lifespan of partial dentures is highly variable depending on the location in the mouth and the care of the appliance.

How Do I Care for my Dentures?

With the exception of fixed partial dentures, dentures are not meant to be worn 24 hours a day. Removing them allows your gum tissues to rest and allows normal stimulation and cleansing by the tongue and your saliva.

You brush dentures, but not with toothpaste, as it is too abrasive and can create microscopic scratches that allow food and plaque to build up. Brushing removes stains and any food or plaque build-up. When brushing is complete, your dentures need to stay moist, so they need to be put in a denture cleanser soaking solution or in water.

Are Dentures Covered by Insurance?

Yes, dental insurance covers dentures. The fitting and placement are considered to be a major procedure, and dental insurance typically covers about half the cost. At Dr. Cavallo’s, we work with your insurance provider to attain the highest coverage possible.

What to Expect from Your Denture Procedure:

Dr. Cavallo designs dentures that will both look and function much like your natural teeth, varying the colors and translucency to provide a custom, confident fit. Dr. Cavallo also seeks to ensure that your jaw and its muscles remain in harmony. This reduces stress on your jaw, relieves pain, and makes you look more youthful and revitalized.

Dr. Cavallo also offers implant-supported dentures, which are fixed in place using four or more strategically placed dental implants. These types of dentures cannot be removed except by a dentist.

Compared to removable dentures, implant dentures offer more benefits in terms of bone retention, stability, and speaking ability.