Natural-Looking Partials and Dentures
Modern dentistry is all about smiles—having a beautiful, healthy, functioning smile, which we think is important for everyone!
And thanks to modern technology, dentistry in our time has brought dramatic changes to the materials and techniques we use to make dentures.
Every person is unique—there is no such thing as “one size fits all” when it comes to dentures.
We take great pride in creating natural-looking dentures: partial dentures that closely match the shape, color, and size of your own teeth, and full dentures that work with your facial features and bone structure—all very different from dentures of the past.
What Is a Denture?
A denture is a lab-made removable, wearable prosthesis designed to replace missing teeth. Dentures fall into two categories: full and partial.
A full denture is needed when all of your natural teeth have been extracted—whether on your upper (maxillary), lower (mandibular), or both arches.
- An upper denture covers the palate, or roof, of your mouth.
- A lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to leave room for your tongue.
- An overdenture attaches to surgically placed implants or remaining natural root tips, although it is still considered a removable full denture.
Two Types of Full Denture
Conventional (Custom) Denture
Don’t let the name mislead you—there is really nothing conventional about our dentures in this category! We completely customize the denture to your mouth and face, making it uniquely yours. Our process requires multiple steps and a top-quality lab, and your result will be worth the time investment.
We can make a conventional denture for you once your bone and gums have completely healed following extractions (which can take several months), or if you’re replacing an old denture that no longer functions or is beyond repair.
Immediate, or Interim, Denture
This type of denture is placed immediately after your teeth have been extracted. It’s really meant to be a temporary solution until you’ve healed well enough to invest in a full custom denture.
Tip: You’ll always want to keep your immediate denture as a spare once we’ve made a custom denture for you.
Both custom and immediate dentures require periodic adjustments, especially in the first few months of wear. At some point, your denture will also require a “reline” and resetting of the denture teeth due to natural shrinkage of your bone and gums.
A partial denture replaces one or more teeth and is considered a removable alternative to a fixed bridge or implants. It typically connects to your existing teeth using acrylic or metal clasps custom designed to fit around your teeth.
Partial dentures fall into two categories and three types.
Categories of Partial Dentures
Bilateral: This is the most common category of partial denture and consists of a connector that spans both sides of your mouth, replacing whichever teeth are missing.
Unilateral: This category of partial denture is designed to replace a missing tooth or teeth on only one side of your mouth.
Types of Partial Dentures
Flexible partial dentures are of premium quality, highly aesthetic, and a very comfortable solution for missing teeth.
This is the newest type of partial and is made from a thin, heat-sensitive type of plastic that is very realistic in appearance. It’s held in place with thin, gum-colored clasps that fit into the natural spaces around your teeth.
Bonus: Flexible partial dentures can also improve the look of other teeth by covering areas where your natural gum tissue has receded!
Cast Metal Partial: Until the introduction of flexible material, the cast metal partial was the most common type of partial and continues to be an excellent solution for replacing missing teeth.
Cast partials are made of high-quality replacement teeth on a rigid cast metal frame. Precision metal clasps allow the partial to fit on your existing teeth.
Acrylic Partial (or “Flipper”): Often referred to as a “flipper,” an acrylic partial denture consists of artificial teeth set in a thick acrylic base (to minimize the risk of breakage) and attaches to your teeth with metal clasps.
Flipper partials are not intended for long-term use and are typically considered a temporary solution until a permanent restoration can be placed (such as an implant or bridge).
Over the course of time, once your teeth have been extracted, your gum ridges and bone will shrink. When this happens, your denture will need to be relined for proper fit and to keep your jaw in normal alignment.
Keeping regular dental appointments with our office is extremely important so that we can check your oral tissue for disease or changes. If you wear a partial denture, you’ll also need regular professional cleanings for your existing natural teeth.