Dentures & Partials

A denture is a removable replacement for missing teeth and surrounding tissues. Two types of dentures are available—complete and partial dentures.

Complete dentures are used when all the teeth are missing, while partial dentures are used when some natural teeth remain. Complete dentures can either be “conventional” or “immediate.” Conventional dentures are made after the teeth have been removed and the gum tissue has had a chance to heal. A conventional denture is usually ready for placement about 8 to 12 weeks after the teeth have been removed. Unlike conventional dentures, immediate dentures are made in advance and can be placed at the time of tooth removal. As a result, the wearer does not have to be without teeth during the healing period.

A removable partial denture usually consists of replacement teeth attached to a gum-colored base, which is connected by either a metal or flexible resin framework that holds the partial in the mouth. Partial dentures are used when there are some remaining natural teeth in the upper or lower jaw which act as anchors for the partial. Not only does a partial denture fill in the spaces created by missing teeth, it prevents the remaining teeth from shifting and changing position.