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What Are Dentures ?

Dentures are a natural-looking, removable replacement for missing teeth. There are two basic types of dentures: full dentures and partial dentures.

A full denture, or complete denture, is constructed for a patient that is missing all their natural teeth.  A first denture can be done in two ways: an immediate denture or conventional denture.  An immediate denture is constructed while the patient still has some of their own natural teeth in place.  The denture is inserted at the time of the removal of the remaining natural teeth.  The advantage of the immediate denture is that a patient is never without teeth.  An immediate denture is an ideal solution when a patient wants the final aesthetic result to exactly mimic their own original natural teeth.
Complete Denture Image

The disadvantage of the immediate denture is that the initial fit is not comparable to the conventional denture that is constructed after the oral tissues have had time to heal from the surgery.  In addition, if a patient wants the denture to provide a different appearance than that of their natural teeth, there is no method of previewing the final result.

A conventional complete denture is a denture that is constructed over tissue that is thoroughly healed.  A conventional complete denture has optimal fit when initially placed.  In addition, one of the steps that is available during the construction of a complete conventional denture is the esthetic try-in.  During this step, the patient is able to preview the final esthetic result of the denture.  If necessary, multiple denture try-in appointments can be done in order to work out the desired appearance.  When the patient is satisfied with the appearance, the denture is finally finished.  This method of complete denture treatment provides ultimate control over the final result.

As the name implies, partial dentures are constructed when it is necessary to replace only some of the teeth in the dental arch.  Typically, the partial denture has an underlying metal framework on to which the artificial denture teeth are attached.  In addition, clasps are incorporated into the framework.  These clasps attach the partial to the existing teeth.  Partial dentures can sometimes be used as a removable alternative to fixed bridges.  However, more commonly partial dentures are indicated in situations where it is impossible to use fixed bridges.  For instance, when a patient is missing all the posterior teeth and the partial denture can only be anchored to the remaining anterior teeth.

Partial Denture Image

Partial dentures can sometimes be constructed without a metal framework.  In these cases, the entire partial is made from denture acrylic.  These types of partials are frequently referred to as “stayplates.”  Stayplates can be made with or without clasps.  Stayplates are generally considered a temporary prosthesis.  Because they cover most of the soft tissue and fit against the remaining teeth, they can cause problems if worn long term.

Facts About Dentures

559 226-2615
Paul Budzik DDS
4828 N. First Street, Suite 106
Fresno, CA  93726

Complete and Partial Dentures
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Paul Budzik DDS
In Private Practice Since 1975
© Paul Budzik DDS 2013