According to the American College of Prosthodontists, the number of Americans missing at least one tooth is forecasted to grow from 120 million to 200 million in the next 15 years. Missing teeth can result in a lack of confidence in your smile and can also have a negative impact on your oral health. Luckily, dentures are a fantastic solution to missing teeth. Thanks to the evolution of dentures over the years, they are very different from what they were when your grandparents were kids and provide a number of benefits. Let’s take a closer look at the evolution of these classic restorations.
The Early Days of Dentures
The Etruscan people of ancient Italy made the first dentures in 700 BC. They were made from either animal or human teeth tied together with gold wires. In 16th century Japan, the earliest surviving pair of dentures were made from wood. While stories claim that President George Washington also wore wooden dentures, his dentures were actually made from a carved hippopotamus ivory plate with human and animal teeth placed in it. These dentures were uncomfortable, easily stained, and gave off a foul odor over time, but the wealthy still wore them in to the early 1800s.
The Dentures of Today
In 1820, a silversmith made the first pair of modern dentures by attaching porcelain teeth to gold plates and used springs and swivels to allow them to work more efficiently. In the mid-1800s, dentures made of vulcanite, or hardened rubber, were made as an alternative to costly porcelain. They were more customizable since they could be molded to fit a person’s gums and were popular with both the rich and the poor until the 20th century when acrylic resin took their place.
Today, the framework of dentures can be made from a variety of materials including porcelain, acrylic, resin, nylon, or metal. The specific materials used will vary depending on the type of dentures you’re having placed. The replacement teeth can be made from porcelain or resin. Porcelain is generally preferred since it has both the color and the texture of natural teeth and is highly durable.
Benefits of Dentures
Rudimentary dentures weren’t always the most comfortable, but modern dentures are designed to be pleasant to wear and function on par with your natural teeth. Some of the other benefits of today’s dentures are that they:
- Are cost-effective and natural-looking
- Prevent sagging by replacing facial support that was once provided by your natural teeth
- Can be removed for easy cleaning
- Prevent additional wear and tear on any natural teeth you have left by distributing chewing forces more evenly
From crude wood to the orthodontic marvel we know today, dentures have come a long way from what they once were. With modern dentures, you’ll once again have the full smile you deserve!
About the Practice
Medford residents have been putting their trust in Dr. Anthony Giamberardino and the Giamberardino Dental Care team to provide comprehensive oral health treatment since 1993. They go out of their way to make every patient feel welcome, and they utilize advanced technology to ensure each procedure is quick, comfortable, and effective. From regular checkups to dentures, Giamberardino Dental Care is here to help. For more information about Giamberardino Dental Care or to learn if dentures are right for you, visit their website or call their office at (339) 674-6725.