A dental flipper refers to a small dental plate that is used to replace a missing tooth or two on a temporary basis. This article discusses some of the issues that you may want to know about this temporary device.
When the Dental Plate is Given
When you lose a tooth or two, such as in an accident, the dentist has three options from which he or she can choose an artificial replacement for the lost tooth or teeth. The first option is to use a dental bridge. The second option that the dentist can choose is to have an implant placed in your mouth so that the false tooth has a firm base. The third option is to give you dentures that you can remove when you are going to sleep or to brush.
If the dentist chooses to use a bridge, he or she will give you a temporary bridge on the day that he or she extracts the badly damaged tooth. However, if he or she picks one of the other two replacement options, he or she will give you dental flippers.
Why It Is Necessary to Have a Temporary Replacement
First, the more permanent tooth replacement options, such as dental implants, can take several days or weeks to be planned and installed. The temporary replacement helps you to avoid having a gap in your dental structure as you wait for that permanent option to be ready for installation.
Second, your gum keeps changing shape as it heals after the tooth extraction. It would be unwise to install a permanent tooth replacement when the gum is still changing rapidly. The temporary option, such as a dental flipper, covers the gap in your teeth as the gum is allowed to heal before the permanent replacement can be fabricated and installed based on the structure of the fully healed gum.
The Advantages of Flippers
Dental flippers are very easy to make because they are designed to provide a short-term replacement for a missing tooth or two.
They are also very easy to adjust or replace in case your gums change so much that the flipper no longer fits you.
The simple design of flippers also makes them an affordable option for those who do not want to have a gap in their mouth as they wait for permanent replacements for their missing teeth.
The Shortcomings of Dental Flippers
The flippers may not resemble your existing teeth. This can make them easy to identify as false teeth.
Flippers are designed to wedge into the gap between existing teeth. No clasps or wires are used to hold them in place. This lack of anchorage can make some flippers feel loose in the mouth.
Discuss the information above with your dentist in case you feel that you need dental flippers. He or she will recommend the most appropriate dental plate to address your needs.