Like a bridge, partial dentures rest on surrounding teeth to fill in the gaps where one or more teeth are missing. But unlike a bridge, partial dentures are fully removable by the wearer. Partials are affordable alternatives to other types of dental prosthetics and are custom-made to blend in with each patient’s natural teeth. It takes a little time to adapt to new partials, but many people find that they reclaim much of their original function and aesthetics with partial dentures in place.
Did you know?
Partial dentures require gentle care and frequent cleaning. Once you get your new partial dentures, you’ll need to:
- Keep them moist at all times by soaking them in a denture solution when not in use
- Gently brush your dentures daily using a soft-bristled tooth brush
- Be careful not to drop your partial dentures, as they may break
- Avoid exposing your partial to hot temperatures that could cause warping
Frequently Asked Questions
Am I a candidate for partial dentures?
You may be a candidate for partial dentures if you have one or more missing teeth, and the space they once filled is surrounded by other teeth or permanent restorations. To find out more about whether partial dentures are right for you, schedule a consultation with your dentist.
What should I expect when being fit for partial dentures?
If you decide to get a partial denture, you’ll need to visit your dentist to have an impression made of the area your partial will fill. The impression will be sent to a dental lab, where a technician will fabricate a custom partial. There are different types of partial dentures. One form involves a metal framework with cast clasps that fit securely against the natural teeth and provide retention for the appliance. Resin teeth and a gum-colored base resin are then applied over the metal framework. The other forms of partial dentures involve full resin base material with no metal framework. This type of resin is slightly flexible and any clasps are also made of resin that wraps around the natural teeth for retention. Your dentist will discuss these options for you in greater detail so that you can decide which type of partial denture is best for you.
Will I need to follow any special oral health instructions after receiving my partials?
Yes. Good oral health is still important – even if you have a few missing teeth. In addition to caring for your new dental prosthetic, you’ll also need to brush your gums and tongue twice daily to stimulate circulation and remove bacteria that could cause gum disease. Continue seeing your dentist twice yearly for exams and cleanings, and be sure to bring your partial dentures along to each visit. After a few years, you may find that your partial needs to be relined or rebased to better fit the changes to the bone structure in your mouth.