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Choosing your Denturist

How do you go about choosing a Denturist in Victoria BC BC? That’s a difficult question to answer for most people and yet it is an important one because having properly fitting dentures and an attractive smile are essential to your health and well being. A good place to start is to check out the smiles of those around you and to see if someone you trust can provide a referral and give you some idea of what made their experience with a particular Denturist a positive one. Location is also usually a consideration but after you’ve narrowed down the geography, you may want to consider the following before you make this important decision.

First of all, it’s always a good idea to plan to see a few denturists before you make a commitment to invest your time, health, money and trust in anyone. Just like any investment you make in your life, you will want to make sure that the practitioner you choose is someone that is going to deliver you the very best product available. You will also be spending anywhere from 4 – 6 appointments with this person so feeling comfortable in their presence and in their clinic is also of importance. Luckily, most denturists provide consultations free of charge so booking a few consults with your neighbourhood denturists will not impact your pocketbook and will typically take up only a small amount of your time.

Once you are meeting with the denturist, you might want to consider:

  • How comfortable do you feel with the denturist, the clinic and the staff?
  • How willing is the Denturist to explain your particular dental situation, answer questions and, clarify answers if necessary, to ensure that you understand your particular situation and/or treatment options?
  • The Denturist’s education and years of experience
  • Does the Denturist participate in ongoing continuing education and/or conferences to keep him/her up to date with their profession?
  • Is the Denturist registered with the College of Denturists of BC?
  • Any particular areas of expertise?
  • Their hours of operation and how that fits into your scheduling needs
  • How much of the work is done “in-house” and how much is sent to an outside lab for fabrication?
  • What kinds of materials, equipment and techniques do they use? Equipment and materials can vary quite significantly as can the techniques used to fit and equilibrate dentures.
  • How many sets of impressions are taken to ensure a precise fit?
  • What techniques are employed to ensure proper balance and function of the teeth?
  • What processing methods are used?
  • Are wax try-in models provided so you can see what your dentures will look like and make any changes prior to processing?
  • How are billing and insurance claims handled?
  • Will the Denturist provide you with references of past patients who are willing to speak to you about their experience?

By putting a little bit of time into your decision making process, you will hopefully feel the reassurance that comes with feeling good about your practitioner and having all the information you need to make the best treatment decision for your particular dental situation. Whether you are getting dentures for the first time or having a set replaced, getting new dentures is not only a financial investment but also an investment in your time and more importantly, your health, and well-being. Taking the time to make sure there is a ” fit” between you and your Denturist can ultimately be as important as the perfect fit you hope to have with your new set of dentures.

Referral Reward Program

Word of mouth referrals are easily one of the best and most significant ways to generate new business for a Victoria Denturist. Even in this day of advertising, websites, and social media, nothing carries more weight with potential new customers than hearing about positive first hand experiences. At the Westshore Denture Clinic we really value those patients that let their friends, co-workers and family members know about their denture experience with us. As a result, we created our Referral Reward Program and began including a Referral Reward Card in the gift bag that is provided with each new denture. All you need to do is to give this card (your name should be written on the back) to a potential new patient and when they begin treatment for a new denture, we will happily send you a $50 Visa gift card. It’s that easy! And if you don’t have a card, just give Kim a call at 250-478-2114 and let her know who you referred. Either way, we will be happy to send you a $50 Visa Card to show our appreciation and to say “Thank you!” for referring our professional dentures to your friends, co-workers and family!

Scary, scary teeth!

While dentures are a prosthetic device and obviously can never be as good as the real thing, consider yourself lucky that you didn’t need dentures in previous centuries. Did you know that 18th and 19th century dentures were made from ivory and animal bone and often included the teeth of executed criminals or exhumed bodies? While ivory and animal bone were used for many years, it was eventually discovered that human teeth were a much better much match for both fit and function and consequently, human teeth began to be collected for denture use in a variety of ways including recovering the teeth from many unfortunate souls who lost their lives in prison, through execution or through illness. Of course, the teeth that were used from these sources often brought with them a variety of infections (including syphilis) that were spread when contaminated tissue from these teeth came into contact with the new patient’s open wounds in the mouth. As a result, the need to protect patients from these infections became a real concern and the hunt was on to find young and healthy teeth. Luckily, in 1815, the 51, 000 men that died fighting the Battle of Waterloo left behind many sets of young and healthy teeth and these teeth and any other teeth left behind by dead soldiers became referred to as “Waterloo Teeth”. Throughout the various wars of the 19th century including the Crimean and American Civil Wars, “Waterloo Teeth” were recovered by ‘body-snatchers’ who followed armies into battle, removed the teeth from dead soldiers and then sold them to dentists and surgeons at a very low cost. The history of dentures has been an evolution in science, technology and understanding.

As the 19th century wore on, the upper class began to realize that they were wearing teeth from lower class and deceased persons and the stigma associated with this close and gruesome association resulted in a demand for more suitable materials, such as porcelain. Today, modern materials such as polymethylmethacrylate acrylic (PPMA) are used to make denture teeth and are available in heat cured or cold cured varieties. Commercially produced acrylic teeth are available in hundreds of shapes and tooth colors and happily, body snatchers are no longer required!

For your new smile, call a professional denturist in Victoria BC such as Cole Merkley at Westshore Denture Clinic.

Adjusting To Your New Dentures

Did you know that adjusting to new dentures in Victoria, BC may take several days, weeks, or in rare cases, months? The adjustment time varies from person to person depending on the changes that were made to your new denture to correct for bone loss and/or denture wear. If you have worn a denture for 10 or more years, your oral anatomy has changed significantly in that time period and, as a result, it is going to take you some time to adjust to a new denture. If you take a picture of yourself from 10 years ago and look in the mirror today – you are going to see some pretty significant changes. Those changes will be apparent inside your mouth too – you just may not be able to see them. Similarly, if you are adjusting to dentures for the very first time, dentures are going to feel significantly different from your natural teeth. Either way, your new denture may feel and function quite a bit different than your old one and, as a result, challenges with speech, nausea, excessive saliva, and eating are common. Don’t worry though, these are just very temporary challenges that will decrease with time and some practice.

Lisping and whistling are two common and temporary speech difficulties. Reading aloud and repeating challenging words can help shorten the adjustment time.

You may also find that your mouth is producing excessive saliva and, this in turn, may cause you to feel nauseous. Having small sugarless candies handy can help in encouraging you to swallow more often which will also help reduce the flow of saliva. If you find yourself gagging with your new denture(s), try to keep the denture in your mouth as this reflex will lessen with time. Sipping on water may also help reduce gagging.

For many people, having new dentures usually results in having to learn how to eat all over again. Since the position, size and shape of your new teeth are probably at least slightly different than your previous denture or natural teeth, chances are it will take some time before eating feels natural again. It is usually advisable to start by eating soft foods, cutting food into smaller portions and to stay away from bulky, sticky or hard foods at first. Making an effort to chew on both the right and left sides of the back teeth at the same time will also help to balance the denture. It’s also helpful to remember that your front teeth should only be used for biting things off and NOT for chewing!

While time and practice do usually solve most of the above challenges, adjustments are also a normal and expected part of any treatment plan for new dentures. As a result, the Westshore Denture Clinic does not charge for adjustments for 6 months after you receive your new dentures.

Ivocap® Processing – What’s all the Fuss About?

At Westshore Denture Clinic, we pride ourselves on using the best materials and the most advanced technology possible. We do this for the simple reason that it

provides you, our patient, with the most natural looking smile and the highest functionality possible in a denture. Not all dentures are fabricated using the same

materials – quality can vary as can the cost. The same applies to the technology used – there are a variety of techniques that can be used but none that come close to

providing all of the advantages of Ivocap® processing. So what exactly makes Ivocap® so revolutionary in the process of dentures Victoria BC fabrication?

To begin with, it’s important to know that the acrylic used for the pink tissue portion of a denture will shrink when it is processed which in turn, will cause inaccuracies

in your denture’s fit. Ivocap® completely compensates for this shrinkage through its injection technology which is considered state of the art in denture

processing. The accuracy of the Ivocap® process then will allow you to have the best fitting denture possible as well as one that will not require denture adhesives. In

addition,Ivocap® also offers important advantages in the following areas:

  • J Comfort: Reduced irritation to the gums
  • J Strength: The extremely dense material reduces the chance of breakage
  • J Cleanliness: The nonporous surface greatly reduces odor-causing plaque and bacteria
  • J Health: You will be able to eat virtually any food
  • J Esthetics: Dentures are natural looking so you can smile, speak and laugh with confidence
  • J Bio-compatible: Dentures will not stain, distort taste, or collect odors or irritating bacteria

All of these advantages add up to a premium precision quality denture that will provide you with the most comfortable fit, the confidence that comes with having a

natural and lifelike smile, and the assurance of optimal functioning when you eat, speak or laugh. Ivocap® is indeed revolutionary technology in the area of denture

fabrication and we are happy to be able to offer it to you at the Westshore Denture Clinic.

Member of the Denturists Association of BC