Dentures, also known as false teeth, are prosthetic devices constructed to replace missing teeth; they are supported by the surrounding soft and hard tissues of the oral cavity. Conventional dentures are removable. However, there are many different denture designs, some which rely on bonding or clasping onto teeth or dental implants. There are two main categories of dentures, the distinction being whether they are used to replace missing teeth on the mandibular arch or on the maxillary arch.
- Mastication, as chewing ability is improved by replacing edentulous areas with denture teeth.
- Aesthetics, because the presence of teeth gives a natural appearance to the face, and wearing a denture to replace missing teeth provides support for the lips and cheeks and corrects the collapsed appearance that results from the loss of teeth.
- Pronunciation, because replacing missing teeth, especially the anteriors, enables patients to speak better. There is especially improvement in pronouncing words containing sibilants or fricatives.
- Self-esteem, because improved looks and speech boost confidence in the ability to interact socially.