The primary purpose of denture is to replace multiple missing teeth or to restore the entire dentition such that the patient can eat and talk normally. It is difficult to be without teeth for anyone. There are social, psychological and health significance. In case of partial missing teeth, without a denture, the remaining teeth can shift and ruin the entire occlusion. Denture restores the bite, regains function, and prevents over closing of the jaw to avoid TMJ problem. Properly constructed denture can also make the patient look younger by opening the vertical dimension to eliminate wrinkles at the corner of the mouth.
There are two different types of denture, full and partial. Full denture is for patients who are missing all the teeth on either the upper or lower arch. It is made out of a strong acrylic base with durable life-like acrylic teeth. Acrylic denture teeth are preferred over porcelain teeth because they make less noise when talking and they can be repaired if broken. Denture stays in the mouth like a suction cup. The border must be tightly sealed. However, for the lower arch, the movement of the tongue will always unseat the denture. Therefore, we still recommend to use some denture adhesive to give it a little more retention.
Partial denture, on the other hand, is to replace multiple missing teeth to prevent the remaining teeth from shifting and to regain function. The metal-based partial is made of a cobalt-chromium alloy that can be casted to as thin as 0.5 mm and yet still maintains its rigidity without deformation. It is very comfortable to wear and is retained by the patient’s natural teeth. Because the palate is only partially covered and the frame is very thin, it allows patient to feel the temperature and the taste of food without alteration.
Another material to make partial denture is valplast, an elastic nylon material that is entirely metal free. It is used when cosmetic is the primary concern to the patient. It is also retained by the patient’s natural teeth. The only problem is it does not allow simple repair at the dental office. In anyway, we will recommend the best treatment option to you when you come in for a consultation.