Partial dentures are one of the available options for replacing partially missing teeth. Depending on your exact case will determine the type of partial denture that is most suitable for you.
Why Would I Need a Partial Denture?
If you have had an accident which has resulted in multiple teeth being lost or overtime your teeth have fallen out (often seen in gum disease cases), then a partial denture may be the answer for you.
How Are Partial Dentures Made?
Partial dentures are made in a similar way to a full set of dentures. We will take an impression of your mouth and the remaining teeth. These impressions are then sent off to a dental laboratory, where a dental technician will make special trays that are used for the next set of impressions. The secondary impressions allow us to get a more accurate model of your teeth, and will again be sent to the dental laboratory, where a mock-up of the partial dentures are made.
With the mock up made, we will try the new denture in place to check the fit and determine what further adjustments will be required. This is an important part of the journey, as it helps us further refine the denture so it is comfortable and functional.
The whole procedure will take around 5 visits to make. Once we have fitted the final denture, it is still to be expected that slight adjustments may still be required. This is because our mouths are adaptive and the denture will be considered a foreign body and any slight change in the mouth can have an effect on the fit. If you have had a denture for many years and are starting to notice it is not as comfortable as it once was, it may just need to be relined with you mouth, as our mouths will continue to change over time.
How the partial dentures stay in place will be dependent on your exact case. This can be through the use of precision attachment clasps that use the adjacent remaining teeth to help fix your new teeth in place. Another method is by doing a fixed partial denture bridge which again utilises the adjacent teeth to hold the denture in place. The difference with this method is that the adjacent teeth need to be prepared slightly (shaven) to allow for dental crowns to be fitted on top.
Our dentures can also be made in a variety of different materials and which option suits you best will be dependent on your exact case. To find out which options are the most suitable for you, please do not hesitate to call us and book your dental assessment.
Common Materials Used
As previously mentioned, the best type of denture for you will be dependent on your own individual needs.
Cast metal - this type of denture utilises a framework made from metal, and clasps that are connected to crowns for support. This framework is covered by a pink acrylic (plastic), to make it discrete. This type of partial denture is often considered the gold standard as it offers strength and is long lasting, while also offering aesthetical benefits.
Flexible nylon - as the name suggests, this is a very flexible and light weight type of denture. It is very thin and one of the benefits is that the patient often quickly acclimatises to the denture. They are also very easy to fit, and its very unlikely we need to alter any of your natural teeth in the process.
Porcelain/Resin teeth - the actual teeth are often made out of either a porcelain or resin material. Porcelain used to be the preferred method, as they are very strong and durable. But the main disadvantage being they can break if dropped, and because you will take your dentures out to be cleaned over a porcelain basin, accidents can happen (we recommend putting a towel in the basin first). Porcelain teeth can also wear down your natural teeth as well (due to their strength). Acrylic resin is now the much preferred go to method for the teeth. With advances In technology, we are able to make more durable (resin) teeth, and they are easier to adjust to get the correct occlusion. It also brings the cost down, as porcelain as a material, is more expensive. However resin teeth will not last as long as porcelain and will need replacing more often (every 5-8 years).
Looking After Your Partial Denture
Just like your natural teeth, it is just as important to ensure you practice a good oral hygiene habit with your false teeth. Bacteria will still build up on fake teeth and if not cleaned correctly then it could potentially damage your new teeth. We always advise patients on the best after care when it comes to dentures and we can recommend various cleaning products to help ensure they last as long as possible.
Getting Used To Your Dentures
In the early stages it will feel a bit strange when you first wear your dentures. This is because they are a foreign body and will take some getting used to. The more you wear them, the quicker they will feel like a natural part of your body. You may need an initial adjustment which is normal with dentures, if so, please do not hesitate to call us and we will be able to assist you. We do recommend that during the night time you don't wear your dentures, and this is so your mouths can have a bit of a rest - please store your dentures in a glass of water so they are kept moist (so they don't dry out).
For any denture related questions or to explore your options, please do not hesitate to call us and book your dental assessment today.