The Pros and Cons of Partial Dentures, Explained

partial dentures
Artificial replacement teeth on a dark surface

Did you know that in one study that was conducted across 19 different countries it was found that 19% of the population wears some form of dentures? This includes partial dentures.

If you’re missing one or more teeth, then you may be considering a partial denture. Partial dentures are removable dental appliances that replace missing teeth. 

They come in a variety of styles and materials, so it’s important to understand the pros and cons before making a decision. 

In this quick guide, we’ll take a closer look at both the pros and cons of partial dentures. By understanding both sides, you can make an informed decision about whether or not a partial denture is right for you. Keep scrolling to learn more!

What Are Dentures?

The word denture comes from the Latin word dens, meaning tooth. Dentures are dental appliances that you can put in your mouth to replace missing teeth. They come in two main types: complete dentures and partial dentures. 

Complete dentures are used to replace your entire set of teeth. Whether you replace the top teeth, bottom teeth, or both, when you take complete dentures out you only have gums. Now, what are partial dentures?

Partial dentures are typically made of plastic, metal, or a combination of both materials. They consist of a gum-colored base that fits over the gums and is attached to existing teeth with metal clasps. 

Partial dentures can be removable or they can be fixed in place with dental cement. Whether removable or fixed, partial dentures are designed to blend in with natural teeth and improve the function and appearance of the smile.

Full vs. Partial Dentures: Which is Best?

Full dentures are likely better for you if you’ve lost all of your teeth. If you still have some of your natural teeth, however, then partial dentures make more sense.

Worried about your budget? Full dentures tend to be cheaper because full dentures are made to fit over your gums, and they are held in place by suction or adhesive. 

Partial dentures are made to replace one or more missing teeth, and they are held in place by metal clasps that attach to your natural teeth. This makes them slightly more difficult to clean and, in some cases, slightly more expensive, too.

Full dentures can be more comfortable than partial dentures because they don’t rely on your natural teeth for support. However, depending on your smile, partial dentures can be more comfortable than full dentures because they don’t cover your entire gum line. 

Finally, when it comes to cleaning, full dentures can be easier to keep clean than partial dentures because they don’t have metal clasps that can trap food and plaque.

Partial dentures can be more difficult to keep clean than full dentures because they have metal clasps that can trap food and plaque.

Types of Partial Dentures

If you’ve read through the above breakdown of full vs. partial dentures and believe that partial dentures are the best option for you then it’s helpful to understand the different types available to you.

Cast Metal Partial Denture

Cast metal partial dentures are one of the most common types of partial dentures available. They are made of an ultra-thin and lightweight cobalt chrome alloy, which offers greater strength and stability than other types of partial dentures. 

Some of the advantages of cast metal partial dentures include the fact that your dentures don’t cover as much of your mouth as acrylic dentures do. This increases comfort and allows you to enjoy a better overall fit.

Likewise, because these partial dentures rely on rest seats or clasps to keep them in place, you can enjoy a more supportive fit. This helps ensure that your dentures will be properly held in place.

However, some of the disadvantages of cast metal partial dentures include the fact that they tend to come with higher costs than other types of partial dentures. This is due to the alloy needed to make these dentures. 

Likewise, cast metal dentures take longer to manufacture than other types of partial dentures. And, aesthetically, the metal frame is not as pleasing. In some cases, you may be able to see the metal hooks depending on the location of the partial denture.

Overall, however, cast metal partial dentures are a good permanent solution to replace missing teeth and can last for many years with proper care.

Acrylic Partial Denture

Acrylic partial dentures, also known as dental flippers, are dentures made entirely of acrylic. This acrylic is then supported with a metal base and clasp.

While you can wear these partial dentures long-term, they’re usually used as provisional or temporary partial dentures while you come up with a more permanent solution (such as one of the other types of dentures on this list, for example).

The advantages of acrylic partial dentures are plenty, though. For one, they’re budget-friendly due to the ease with which companies can make acrylic dentures. The material used also means that they’re slightly easier to repair if you damage them.

However, the disadvantages of acrylic partial dentures include the fact that the weakness of the acrylic base tends to break, regardless of the type of metal base you have. This is why they’re often a temporary solution.

If you find that they’re breaking frequently then you have to upgrade the thickness of the acrylic. While this helps make them more durable, it means that you have to take some time to get used to the dentures in your mouth.

Acrylic partial dentures can feel bulky for some people if they wear them long-term due to the impact-resistant acrylic used in the manufacturing process. However, depending on the shape of your mouth and your preferences, they could be the right solution for you.

Flexible Partial Denture

Flexible partial dentures are thin, heat-sensitive plastic plates. They are strong and durable, yet flexible and comfortable to wear. They are a good option for people with allergies to molten metal or acrylic.

Similar to the other types of partial dentures listed here, there are plenty of advantages of flexible partial dentures. Some of those include the fact that flexible partial dentures:

  • Can be made faster than cast metal dentures
  • Are very aesthetically pleasing because the material is gum-colored (and slightly transparent)
  • Offer a greater level of comfort because they easily adhere to your gums without the use of any untasty adhesive
  • Are hypoallergenic
  • Offer flexibility without having to sacrifice durability

As an added plus, these flexible dentures are odor and stain-resistant. However, that doesn’t mean that they’re without their disadvantages. 

The disadvantages of flexible partial dentures include the fact that the base is more prone to bacteria buildup. While this is somewhat true for all dentures, learning how to properly clean your dentures can help prevent issues with buildup.

Due to the popularity and durability of these partial dentures, they also tend to be more costly than other types of dentures. However, because they’re so resistant and durable, you get a lot of use out of them. That helps offset the cost.

Overall, flexible partial dentures can be a comfortable and aesthetically pleasing option for people who wear them.

Advantages of Partial Dentures

Not sold on the benefits of partial dentures? Aside from some of the benefits listed above in regards to the specific type of partial dentures available, here are a few more benefits.

Partial Dentures Are Minimally Invasive

Partial dentures have several advantages over other types of dental prosthetics. One of the biggest advantages is that they are minimally invasive. 

Likewise, the process of getting partial dentures is minimally invasive. They don’t require any surgery or tooth extraction, and they can be fitted in a single office visit (or even online!). 

This means that you can avoid the pain and recovery time associated with more invasive procedures while still enjoying the benefits of replacing missing teeth.

Partial Dentures Can Be Adjusted Later

One of the main advantages is that you can adjust partial dentures later if necessary. This means that if your mouth changes shape over time, the dentures can be adjusted to fit your new mouth. 

With online ordering and simple at-home processes, you can easily order another set of partial dentures, take a new impression, and have your partial dentures delivered to your doorstep in a matter of days.

This process is called denture reline and we offer a quick and easy service to ensure your dentures fit like new.

Partial Dentures Are Easier to Adapt To

Wondering whether or not you should get full dentures or partial dentures? If you still have a few great teeth then partial dentures might make sense. 

Because they fit around your natural teeth and only replace some of your teeth, you can benefit from added comfort when compared to full dentures. Overall this makes it much easier to get used to eating and talking with partial dentures.

Disadvantages of Partial Dentures

We understand that partial dentures aren’t for everyone. We want to be honest about the disadvantages of getting partial dentures, which include the following.

Partial Dentures Might Not Function Like Dental Implants

One of the biggest disadvantages is that partial dentures might not function like dental implants. Partial dentures rely on the remaining teeth for support, which can cause them to slip or move when eating or speaking.

Depending on the structure of your mouth and the position of your remaining teeth, you might find that full dentures are better for you. The best way to figure this out is to get in touch with a specialist who can assess your specific case.

Partial Dentures Require Proper Cleaning

Partial dentures require proper cleaning just like natural teeth do. After all, bacteria and plaque can form on dentures just as they do on natural teeth, which can lead to gum disease. 

Partial dentures also need to be brushed with a soft toothbrush and nonabrasive toothpaste daily just as you would your natural teeth. On top of that, however, you’ll want to learn how to soak them in a mild denture cleanser daily to ensure you have a healthy mouth.

What to Know About Ordering Partial Dentures Online

While many dental labs offer partial dentures, you may also be considering ordering them online. Here’s what you need to know about ordering partial dentures online through Denture Rescue.

Step 1: You Will Make a Down Payment

First, you will make a down payment. This ensures that we can cover the costs of starting to custom-make your partial dentures. It also covers the cost of our administration fees and sending you your custom impression kit.

Step 2: You Will Make Your Impressions

You will need to make your dental impressions. You can do this at home using a kit that will be sent to you. While this might seem like a daunting task, it’s actually quite easy with the instructions included.

Once you have made your impressions, you will need to send them back to us in the mail so we can use them to make your dentures.

Step 3: A Specialist Will Make Your Partial Dentures

It is important to remember that partial dentures are not like over-the-counter appliances. They are made specifically for each person and require precise measurements. As such, it is best to have them made by a professional. 

When returning your impressions to Dental Rescue, you can rest assured that our specialists are working hard to ensure we make your partial dentures. We’ll ensure that they fit well according to your impression and that they look natural.

Then, we’ll ship them back to you in 7 to 10 business days.

Order Your Partial Dentures Now

Overall, partial dentures are a great way to replace missing teeth and restore your smile. If you’re considering partial dentures, we encourage you to order them now. 

We’ve made it as easy as possible to get partial dentures online without ever having to step foot outside your house. Don’t wait – order your partial dentures today!

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