Dentures are used to replace missing teeth, and/or to build up the bite so that the jaw relationship is improved. Modern dentures are lighter, stronger, and more comfortable. The teeth used today in all types of dentures are made of plastic so that the shape and colour resemble natural teeth very accurately. Dentures need to be removed from the mouth for cleaning the remaining teeth, gums and dentures.
Dentures can be full dentures that replace all the teeth in the upper and lower jaws or in just one jaw, or partial dentures that replace only some of the teeth, when not all the teeth have been lost. Dentures are made from a variety of materials, most commonly from plastic. They can also have a metal component that is usually a chrome-cobalt alloy.
Implants are often used to anchor and stabilise dentures and are called overdentures. These implants (and particularly in the lower jaw) may have balls, studs or bars attached to them to provide an anchor for the denture. These overdentures are extremely successful.