Denture News

History of Dentures And How Things Have Changed

History of Dentures And How Things Have Changed

I heard a story once: A stall at a market place during the 1950s that sold used dentures of people who had passed away. Market-goers would rummage through a basket of these used appliances and try them in one by one until they found one with the fit to best match their mouths… Safe to say they were unspeakably ill-fitting. Obviously, things have changed, not only guidelines for health and safety, but the way we fabricate false teeth, and the way we treat our oral health.

Types of Dentures Used.

Throughout the year’s high-quality oral prosthetics weren’t something we were blessed to have in today’s age. We weren’t able to just call our local denture clinic and have a complete set in less than a week, they were crafted out of wood or ivory… and probably didn’t feel too comfortable while chewing, or for that matter… Wearing

Bone Dentures: Tooth replacement devices were made out of human or animal bone in the 7th century (bc) they were wrapped and then tied together with gold bands. Then in the 5th century (bc), it was known that the Romans also used this technique… borrowed from the Etruscans of Italy.

Wooden Dentures: Invented in Japan in the 16th century they used softened beeswax to take impressions of a persons mouth, from there, carved out of wood… Wearing dentures made out of wood wouldn’t be replaced until the 18th century and still used up until the 19th century. The earliest wooden dentures were entirely made out of wood, but later versions of these would use natural teeth from the deceased, or sculpt teeth out of ivory, and then attached to the wooden ‘gums’

Porcelain Dentures: In 1820 a goldsmith by the name of Samuel Stockton began manufacturing “high-quality” dentures made out of porcelain and mounted on 18-carat gold plates. In the 1850s they were made out of a hardened rubber into which porcelain teeth were set.

Acrylic Resin: Finally in the 20th century we began to explore the possibilities of plastics. The acrylic used in the 20th century evolved into what we used today. Later was amalgamated with other dentistry practices like surgical dental implants. Denture relines were also something we weren’t able to accomplish before acrylic was implemented.


George Washington had dentures made out of hippo ivory, brass, and gold. Having suffered from tooth decay at a young age, he had one tooth left in his mouth by the time of his presidency in 1789″

George Washingtons Dentures

What’s Changed

Modern Dentures are usually manufactured in a dental lab or by a denturist. Made out of powders shaded to the patients tissue, the powder is a polymer and used with a liquid monomer, then heat cured until hard. Full dentures are usually heat cured for extra strength. Cold cures can be used for things like denture repairs or relines.

Wax try-in on articulator

Complete Dentures: They start off their life with an impression of the patient’s upper and lower mouth, from there high-grade dental plaster is poured into the impressions of the mouth. Then when the plaster is set, the molds are attached to an articulator so your denturist or technician can register your bite and then make that ‘bite’ out of wax.

After the bite Is ‘tried-In’ we can go ahead and ‘setup’ the teeth (that are colour matched to the shade of the patients liking) into the wax made around the model.

if all goes well we go ahead and process the denture in acrylic. For the first little while, the dentures may feel a little uncomfortable, but it’s just like buying a new pair of shoes, you need to work with them, and keep them in… take them out for a spin. Denture clinics in Calgary also offer free denture care, like, adjustments, so we are with you every step of the way.

Implant-Supported: Dental implants are the same process as getting traditional dentures, but a dental surgeon would have placed ‘male’ attachments into the bone of the patient’s mouth, and then the dental appliance is fabricated with ‘female’ attachments in the tissue side of the appliance for extra sturdiness with the patients bite, and overall fit.


Get In Touch:

For a free consultation, Make an Appointment Online or call 587-352-6845.

For more denture care information, visit our Blog.

Holt Dentures is a family-run denture clinic in Calgary, Alberta. If you would like more information about us or have any questions about our denturist and general practices, please give us a call or read the our team page.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.