Like a bridge, partial dentures or “partials” rest on surrounding teeth to fill in the gaps where one or more teeth are missing. Unlike a bridge, partial dentures can be fully removable. Partials are affordable alternatives to other types of dental prosthetics and are custom-made to work in conjunction with each patient’s natural teeth. It may take time to adapt to new partials, but many patients find that they reclaim much of their original function and aesthetics with partial dentures in place.
Partial dentures require gentle care and frequent cleaning. Once you get your new partial dentures, you’ll need to do the following:
- Keep them soaked in a denture solution or water when not in use
- Gently brush your dentures as frequently as you brush your natural teeth
- Be careful not to drop your partial dentures, as they may be more susceptible to fracture
- 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 or denturist.
What should I expect when being fit for partial dentures?
If you decide to get a partial denture, you’ll need to visit a dentist to have your existing teeth evaluated. Once the condition of your natural teeth have been verified, a denturist may discuss your partial denture options and design overview. A denturist is able to fabricate a custom denture that includes a gum-colored base that will fit securely over your gums. A metal framework or clasps can be used to attach your new partial denture on your natural teeth to ensure a secure fit.
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 rebased to better fit the changes to the bone structure in your mouth.
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