How long does it take to get dentures?


If you have missing, damaged, or decayed teeth, getting a set of dentures can actually help improve your overall health. Without the ability to break down food properly with functional teeth, you may not be getting the full nutrition you need. Plus, dentures can improve your appearance and boost your confidence with a bright new smile. 

Most dentures replace an entire arch of teeth, which means the fit and look must be precise for maximum comfort and aesthetics. This may require a somewhat lengthy process, but the wait will be worth it when you’re able to chew your food properly and smile confidently. Here’s a basic overview of how long it takes to get permanent dentures:

Step 1: Preparing the mouth

The time it takes to receive your new set of dentures will depend on how much preparation work needs to be done in your mouth beforehand. If damaged or decayed teeth need to be extracted, you will need to wait until the gums are completely healed before the next step in the process. Healing time varies from patient to patient, but it could take a few months.

Step 2: Making impressions

If you don’t require any extractions, the total process takes about three to four dental visits, starting with this step. Your dentist will take impressions and measurements of your mouth, which will be sent to a dental laboratory to make a wax mock-up of the artificial teeth. This part of the process usually takes a couple of weeks.

Step 3: Making adjustments

After the model comes back from the lab, your dentist will make adjustments for fit and bite, while ensuring the teeth blend well with your facial structure—teeth that are too big, too short, or too narrow can change your appearance. If adjustments to the model are necessary, it will be sent back to the lab for improvements. You might need a few adjustment appointments to get the perfect fit. While this may feel tedious, it’s crucial to get it right before the permanent dentures are made. Overall, the adjustment part of the process takes about three to six weeks.

Step 4: The final fitting

Once your dentist receives the finalized dentures from the lab, you will get a final fitting to ensure everything looks and feels right. It’s common for some patients to have sore spots at first as the gums adjust to the prosthetic. If the sore spots do not resolve on their own, further adjustments to the dentures might be needed, which could extend the overall time it takes to get dentures.

Immediate dentures for the duration

Of course, you don’t want to be without teeth for the time it takes to fabricate permanent dentures. For some people, immediate dentures are placed in the mouth directly after the tooth extraction procedure to protect the gums while they heal, provide the functionality of teeth, and make the transition to permanent dentures easier. 

The timeline for getting immediate dentures is much more compressed compared to permanent dentures. Impressions are taken about one to two months before extraction, and then temporary dentures are fabricated and ready to place directly after the procedure. The process for getting permanent dentures will continue as outlined above, and once you receive your permanent set of new teeth, you can keep your temporary set as a spare.

Affordable dentures in San Diego

If you need a full or partial set of dentures to replace missing, damaged, or decayed teeth, San Diego Dental Specialty Center is here to answer all your questions about the process. Give us a call today at (619) 272-6246 to set up a consultation.