Removable Partial Dentures

Considerations for Removable Partial Dentures

Over time your mouth changes and removable partials and dentures need to be replaced. As your mouth changes with age, the partial can become loose. The supporting teeth can show signs of stress or decay from improper homecare around the clasps and not removing teeth at bedtime. When adhesives are needed to hold your partial (or denture) in place, it is time to get them replaced. Nothing lasts forever and partials (or dentures) are not an exception. The average life of a removable partial or complete denture is FIVE YEARS. Even if you feel they fit well, the teeth on the partial become flat and no longer chew effectively. The excessive chewing needed to break apart your food puts additional stress on the bone that supports your prosthesis. Bone resorption is rapid and cannot be reversed.

Other considerations:

  • They often look better than complete dentures
  • They use existing teeth as anchors for greater stability
  • Easy to repair
  • Less expensive than some other options
  • Easy to clean
  • Can be lost or broken when not in the mouth
  • Food gets easily
  • Many times it can be modified to add another tooth if needed.
  • Can act as a temporary replacement while dental implants are either healing or being saved for

Removable Partial Dentures

Just like the name implies, a removable partial denture can be taken out of the mouth to clean. It is held in place using remaining teeth or an implant as anchors. This replacement option is generally the least expensive but can be a great alternative to the pricier options. You can still have the beautiful smile and self-confidence that we all desire.

Today's partial dentures come in a variety of materials and strengths. They can be made of cast chromium metal or a light weight nylon material that comes in a variety of colors to blend in with other oral structures. The teeth can be fabricated from a hard plastic or a porcelain material. Durability, supporting structures, retention, and esthetics are all considerations that play into making the right choice for your needs. They can be made to replace a single tooth or a variety of teeth that may be missing in the entire arch.

Precision Partials

Precision partial dentures are retained in the mouth by interlocking components. A specially shaped extension of the partial fits snugly into or onto a receiving area or projection of a natural tooth that has been crowned. This makes for anti-slip dentures that won't move or come out when you speak or chew.

How Much Do Partial Dentures Cost?

Generally speaking, partial dentures are extremely affordable and cost less than other forms of tooth replacement such as a dental implant. However, the benefits and better quality of life dental implants bring is something most patients choose when replacing their teeth.

The actual cost of a partial denture depends on your specific needs and materials used. The best way to receive an accurate quote on partial denture is to request an appointment for a consultation.

Denture Instructions

Occasionally, it is difficult to adapt to full or partial dentures. At first they may feel loose, bulky and awkward while speaking. For a quicker adjustment period, follow these instructions:

  1. At first, wear your dentures all the time.
  2. Do not use adhesive unless Stumpf Dental advises you to do so.
  3. You should remove your dentures when you go to sleep.
  4. After removing dentures, clean with a toothbrush and place in a bowl of water. They can be soaked in a commercial denture cleanser, but brushing them is essential.
  5. Any signs of "sore spots," discomfort, or looseness that is causing you difficulty should be brought to our attention.

Never adjust the dentures yourself. Every person and every mouth is different; therefore, adjustment periods will vary.

Please remember that it will take time for you to become completely comfortable with your new teeth.

The Cons of Partial Dentures

Here are a few concerns to partial dentures:

Adjustments & Re-fitting & Replacement
Throughout your lifetime, dentures will need to be replaced and adjusted which can become time consuming and expensive. It is a simple fact that dentures start to become loose and can break through normal activities such as talking, eating, etc. If a denture arch breaks, it may be possible to repair but in some cases it will need to be replaced entirely.

Bone Resorption (degeneration)
If you do not replace tooth roots, the bone where the tooth roots used to be will start to degenerate and shrink. This not only means you'll need to get your dentures re-adjusted but it also means dental implants become less and less of a future option to replace teeth due to the amount of bone required to place the implant becomes less and less.

Impaired Speech
Partial dentures take up more space in the mouth than your normal teeth. Because of this, there is an adjustment period of time where you may notice difficulty in pronouncing certain words or talking in general. As dentures get re-adjusted and re-fitted, you may notice a difference in pronunciation and will have to make minor speech adjustments again.

Bulky & Uncomfortable
Dentures are typically not associated with comfort and although today's technology has made wearing partial dentures more manageable, as you speak and chew, dentures exert their forces onto the gum bed below and tend to cause soreness to these sensitive tissues. Additionally, the bulk of having a denture in your mouth can cumbersome.

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