If you are missing one or more teeth, but still have some remaining on your arch, your dentist may recommend a partial denture as a tooth replacement. Partial dentures can be used to replace missing teeth in the back or front of the mouth. Let’s take a look at ‘what is a partial denture’ and when it might be suitable.
What Is A Partial Denture?
Dentures are used to replace lost teeth. If you are missing an entire arch your dentist will recommend complete dentures. If only a few teeth are missing you will wear partial dentures. Partial dentures are removable and must be taken out for cleaning every day and to give your gums a chance to recover. They are made up of a plastic base, onto which the false teeth are attached. Some have metal clasps to keep them in place.
What Are The Benefits Of Partial Dentures?
Partial dentures replace lost teeth, by filling in the gaps that are left behind. This creates a more aesthetically pleasing smile and also ensures that you have a full arch for eating and chewing. The back teeth need to be replaced in order to chew food, while the front teeth are needed for biting into foods.
Your teeth play an important role in your ability to speak and articulate certain sounds. When you have all your teeth, you can speak with confidence.
Dentures also play an important role in maintaining the structure of your mouth and teeth. When you have been missing teeth for some time, the other teeth in your mouth start to drift, to try and fill up the gaps that have been created.
Without all of your teeth in place, you will also start to lose some bone mass in your jaw bone, as it is no longer being stimulated by tooth roots.
What Alternatives Are There To Dentures?
Dental bridges are an option if you have some natural teeth surrounding the lost tooth. Dental implants could be another option if your gums are healthy. If you need to replace multiple teeth, an implant-supported bridge is sometimes a possibility.
A complete denture is also an alternative option to a partial denture. If you do still have some natural teeth remaining, your dentist would need to pull them out first.
How Is A Partial Denture Made?
First, your dentist will take some x-rays and digital photographs of your mouth, as well as a series of measurements. He or she will also take a series of impressions of your jaws working together.
You will try on the partial denture a number of times as it is being made, in order for the relevant adjustments to be made. Once your dentist has the correct fit, your partial denture will be cast. It might be necessary to make some adjustments once it is complete. Some patients report a slight increase in saliva and some mouth irritation as they get used to partial dentures, but this will improve with time.
To find out more about what is a partial denture and what kind of tooth replacement could work for you, please contact us for an appointment: