What are partial dentures?
Partial dentures, which replace weak or missing teeth, are either full or partial removable set of teeth in one or more areas of your mouth. Unlike conventional types of dentures that rest on the gum and are attached to natural teeth, implant-supported dentures are attached to a foundation that is surgically fixed into the jawbone.
Now when just a few teeth are missing, partial dentures fill the gap. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), partial dentures can be attached to natural teeth in many ways – the most common being the use of metal clasps that grip the natural teeth. They can also be attached to crowns on the natural teeth, which can improve the fit of partial dentures and are often required with precision attachments.
Removable partial dentures usually have replacement teeth fixed to an acrylic base that matches the color of your gums. The acrylic base may cover a metal framework. We may also recommend crowns on some of your natural teeth because they can improve the way a removable partial denture fits your mouth.
It takes some getting used to having to put in and take out a removable partial denture since it may feel tight for the first few weeks. But in time, you won’t even tell you have them on. Never force the denture into place by biting down as this could bend or break the clasps or even damage your teeth.
It’s important to note that you should not wear your removable partial denture the whole day. We may tell you to take out the partial denture at bedtime and put it back in when you wake up. We’ll schedule you for follow-up appointments to look for pressure points or sore spots and possibly adjust your denture so it fits comfortably.
As for maintenance of your dentures to avoid future dental health problems and prolong the lives of the dentures, removing and cleaning your dentures every day is a must. Do this while brushing the tongue, gums and palate with a soft toothbrush to help keep your dentures clean and your mouth fresh.
Here are tips on how to take good care of your removable partial denture:
- Clean your partial denture each day. Take it out of your mouth and rinse off food particles. Wet the brush and put the denture cleaner or a little bit of liquid dish soap on it.
- Brush all the denture surfaces gently. It is best to use a special brush made for cleaning dentures, but you can use a toothbrush with soft bristles.
- Do not use toothpaste to clean dentures. Some toothpastes have abrasive particles that can damage the denture base and teeth.
- When brushing your partial denture, hold over a folded towel or a sink filled with cool water. Your removable partial denture is very delicate and can break easily.
- Keep your partial denture in water or denture soaking solution when you are not wearing it. Do not let it dry out or it can lose its shape.
- Rinse the partial denture well after using any denture cleanser. It may contain chemicals that should not go in the mouth.
Just remember that partial dentures are available so you don’t suffer difficulty chewing or feel self-conscious about the appearance of your mouth. The McRae Dental office in Athens, GA can advise you on the best restoration method to meet your needs. With careful cleaning and maintenance, your dentures will last for many years.
What is a Dental Bridge?
Dental bridges are intended to bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. A bridge is made up of two or more crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap and a false tooth or teeth in between. These false teeth are called pontics and can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these.
Contact our office for Partial and Bridges procedures
There are three main types of dental bridges:
Traditional bridges – These are the most common type of bridge and are made of porcelain fused to metal or ceramics. It involves creating a crown for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth, with a pontic in between.
Cantilever bridges – Unlike traditional bridges, these are not common anymore and not recommended .in the back of the mouth where it can put too much force on other teeth and even damage them. These are used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth.
Maryland bonded bridges (also called a resin-bonded bridge) – These are made of porcelain, porcelain fused to metal, or plastic teeth and gums supported by a metal or porcelain framework. Metal or porcelain wings often on just one side of the bridge are bonded to your existing teeth.
Bridges, which are supported by natural teeth or implants, can have the following benefits:
- Improve your smile
- Restore your ability to properly chew and speak
- Maintain the shape of your face
- Distribute the forces in your bite properly by replacing missing teeth
- Prevent remaining teeth from drifting out of position
- Can last five to 15 years or longer
Dental Bridge Process
During the first visit for getting a dental bridge, preparation involves recontouring these teeth by removing a portion of enamel to allow room for a crown to be placed over them. Next, impressions of the teeth are made, which serve as a model from which the bridge, pontic, and crowns will be made by a dental lab. At McRae Dental, we will make a temporary bridge to wear to protect the exposed teeth and gums while the bridge is being made.
During the second visit, your temporary bridge will be removed and the new porcelain or metal bridge will be checked and adjusted to achieve a proper fit. Multiple visits may be required to check the fit of the metal framework and bite. If the dental bridge is a fixed bridge, we may temporarily cement it in place for a couple of weeks to make sure it is fitting properly. After a few weeks, the bridge is cemented into place.