Do you need to have multiple teeth replaced? If you have more than one or two teeth that are missing or can’t be saved, a partial denture may be the best option for you. When some of the teeth are healthy enough to remain, leaving them in place gives a partial denture something to attach to. Partial dentures are an affordable way to replace a significant number of teeth.
There are 3 basic types of partial dentures for you to consider. Here’s an explanation of the different types and a comparison to help you decide which option is right for you.
- Cast Metal Removable Partial Denture. The most common type of partial denture is the cast metal removable type. This denture consists of a metal frame that holds the artificial teeth together. The metal is covered with a plastic coating that blends in with the gums. The partial denture attaches to the existing teeth with clips made of the same cast metal which is sometimes covered with plastic to blend in with the natural tooth color.
- Acrylic Removable Partial Denture. Sometimes called a “flipper,” acrylic removable partial dentures are easy to pop in and out. These are lightweight and inexpensive, making them easily breakable. They are often used as temporary dentures for this reason. Flippers are also bulky and often uncomfortable, another reason they tend to be a temporary solution. But some patients find them perfectly comfortable and effective, using them for years.
- Flexible Partial Denture. A flexible partial denture is made of plastic or nylon rather than acrylic, which is lightweight and more comfortable. It is a better option for anyone with an acrylic allergy. It also looks very natural, providing patients with a smile they can feel confident about. The only disadvantage is that it is not as sturdy as a cast metal partial denture.
Choosing the Best Option For You
How do you know which of these three types of partial dentures would be best for you? It depends on your individual situation and what your biggest priorities are. What’s most important to you when it comes to your partial denture?
- Cost? If your biggest concern is cost, the acrylic removable denture (flipper) is the most cost effective option. It is lightweight and easy to remove, but it may be uncomfortable and unreliable. It’s important to weigh cost against effectiveness to determine what your best option is.
- Appearance? If the most important consideration is how your partial denture will look, the flexible partial denture may be your best option. The plastic/nylon structure is made to look very natural and blend in with your existing teeth and gums. But if appearance is your biggest concern, keep in mind that this option may not stay in place quite as well as a cast metal partial denture. It may embarrass you if it comes loose at an inopportune time.
- Strength? Do you want a partial denture that will stay in place? A cast metal partial denture attaches to the existing teeth with clips that more effectively anchor the prosthetic in place when you eat and talk. The biggest disadvantage to this type is that the metal clips are sometimes visible when you talk or smile.
Do you have other concerns not yet mentioned? Discuss them with your dentist so that you can get the best partial denture for you.
Consult the Experts at Arrowhead Dental Associates
Before you make a decision, discuss the different partial denture options with your dentist at Arrowhead Dental Associates. We will evaluate the current condition of your existing teeth and determine what type of partial denture would best suit your needs. We take your preferences and concerns into consideration to help you achieve your dental goals.