If you have tooth loss, your dentist may recommend partial dentures as an alternative to dental implants. Millions of Americans currently wear partial dentures, and they can be the right solution if you have several missing teeth and do not want to invest in the time and costs incurred with dental implant surgery.
Dr. Bradley Engle of Engle Dentistry in Naples offers both partial and full dentures at his practice. He shares below some of the most asked questions patients have about partial dentures.
Why do I need partial dentures?
We may recommend a partial denture if you have several missing teeth but your remaining teeth are in good condition and there are no signs of advanced periodontal disease (which can potentially lead to significant tooth loss down the road).
A partial denture is a good choice for its cost effectiveness and relative ease of use. Partial dentures are prescribed if you have one or more natural teeth in your upper or lower jaw, which are used to affix the partial bridge into place using a metal framework which also prevent adjacent teeth from shifting.
How do you wear a removable partial denture?The removable partial denture is comprised of several replacement teeth that are bonded to a gum-colored plastic base, which are affixed by metal hooks or clasps onto your natural teeth to form a nearly seamless row of teeth. Dr. Engle will counsel you on the differences between these two types of partial dentures and help you decide which is best for you.
How long will it take me to become accustomed to the partial denture?
For the first several weeks of wear, the partial denture may feel clunky and like a foreign body in your mouth. Give it time, as you will soon become accustomed to its feel, and to eating and speaking with the partial denture. Your dentist will provide instructions on how to insert and remove the partial denture. It will take some practice and trial and error, but it will become second nature faster the more that you wear it. A partial denture should snap into place without requiring force, biting, or bending which could damage the clasps or hooks.
How long should I wear the denture?
Your partial denture is replacing missing teeth, so for maximum benefit should be worn when awake and removed at bedtime for cleaning and overnight soaking.
How do I take care of my denture?
Partial dentures need to be brushed daily to remove residual food deposits and plaque, just like your nature teeth. Use a brush specially designed for dentures or a soft bristled toothbrush can also work well. Avoid hard bristled brushes that could potentially damage the denture plate. Take care not to bend the appliance.