In most cases, people who need dentures will use the technical services of a dental technician. This was the case with Bob Meyers who got new teeth from his dentist. “I was impressed with the close, smooth and efficient cooperation between my dentist and the dental laboratory,” he reported.
But how exactly does this collaboration work and what are the advantages thereof? In this post we want to shed light on how dentures are being made and what you should know about the process. So you can make more informed decisions about your new teeth.
Dentures require planning
Most dentists work with a dental technician they trust. If a patient needs a denture, the specific requirements and different options are discussed first. Usually, patients want the process to be quick and uncomplicated, but they also want dentures that are specifically designed for their needs.
“After the consultation with my dentist, I went to the dental laboratory next door,” recalls Bob Meyers. Here he was fully informed by the dental technician (the denture specialist) about the different materials and dental options available to him.
“The dental technician was given all the particulars about my situation before my visit. He knew what kind of dentures I would need, and he looked closely at my smile!”
Often photos of the patient’s face and mouth are taken in the dental laboratory, and the exact tooth colour is also determined.
Dentures in the dental laboratory
When Mr Meyers asked the dental technician why he considered this personal contact with the patient so important, the technician replied, “Only you laugh the way you laugh, and only you have the bite that you have!”.
Only you laugh the way you laugh, and only you have the bite that you have!
After this appointment in the laboratory, the dental technician agreed with the dental practice on how to proceed. In this case, it was helpful that the dental technician converted his proposed solution into a mock-up to give a preview of the final result. The dentist could then assess the ‘trial’ teeth in the patient’s mouth. Bob Meyers liked this because he could see and experience what his future dentures would look and feel like, which made his decision easier. A mock-up is made of tooth-coloured plastic and it can be adapted and adjusted in the patient’s mouth, so this is the ideal template for the dentures.
Jaw impressions are used to transfer information about the patient’s mouth and teeth to the dental laboratory. Sometimes this can be done digitally. The dental technician is then able to design the dental prosthesis using this information. Any questions that arise will be discussed with the dentist.
Framework try-ins can often be utilised to good advantage. The dentist receives a preliminary version of the dentures and tests it in the patient’s mouth. This safety measure usually ensures that later corrections are not necessary.
Bob Meyers remembers that he was very excited as the placement date for his new dental prosthesis drew near. At the end everything happened very quickly. The new teeth were tried in his mouth and could be inserted without any further corrections being needed as if they were his own. The teeth looked good and he could bite normally. He also now understands very well why his dentist had to work so closely with the dental technician.