Conventional Denture and Removable Partial Denture

  • Complete denture

Complete denture is indicated when you lost all the natural teeth in one or both arches.  Modern dentistry offers improved comfort, retention and stability through implant-associated treatment modalities such as implant-assisted complete denture ( overdenture ) and implant-supported full arch bridge(s ) to restore complete edentulism, other than the conventional complete denture which offers the least comfort, retention and stability by comparison.    Since 2012 the standard of care for full denture is to have two implants placed at the canine areas to help with the retention of the lower denture.  If you have two lower canines left, roots-assisted denture ( overdenture ) can be made which offers similar retention and stability comparable to implant-assisted overdenture.  

For conventional complete denture, several appointments are required before delivery.  After delivery, adjustment appointment(s) are usually required to ensure a proper fit of the new denture.   Common chief complaints at the adjustment visits are sore spots and unfavorable retention and stability.   Denture adhesive might be suggested for the lower conventional denture.   

Your dentist will give you instructions on how to care for your denture.  Do not wear denture during sleep.  It should be removed and soaked in denture cleaner solution overnight and let the oral tissue get rest and rebound.  

Milled full denture is a digital innovation applied on the traditional full denture.  The benefit of it lies in its manufacturing process: it’s cold milled instead of heat&steam processed, therefore there’s no shrinkage to the acrylic denture base, which renders better coherence, fit and suction on the tissue and ridge.    

For more improved retention and stability, conversion of traditional full denture to removable implant overdenture and fixed hybrid denture by placing implants is suggested. 

  • Partial denture with metal framework

If there are some natural teeth left in the arch, a cast framework partial denture can be indicated to replace the missing teeth, a removable alternative to implant-supported bridge.  Sometimes your dentist will suggest implant-assisted partial denture that uses one or more implants to increase the comfort, retention and stability of the removable prosthesis.  

The metal framework of the partial denture rests and clasps on a few anchorage teeth, which keeps the prosthesis in place and provides the rigidity too.   Some minor preparation on the anchorage teeth are required so that the metal framework doesn’t interfere with the bite and the prosthesis remains stable during function.  

In the beginning, your new partial denture may feel awkward or bulky. This is normal, and you will eventually become accustomed to wearing it.  Inserting and removing the partial denture will require some practice.  Do not bite the partial denture down to seat.  Do not wear partial denture during sleep.  It should be removed and soaked in denture cleaner solution and allow the oral tissue get rest and rebound.  


  • Immediate full and partial dentures

This type of denture is made before the teeth are extracted.   Some patients don’t want to go about without the front teeth when a full denture or partial denture is treatment planned, therefore immediate complete and partial denture is the treatment of choice.  The dentist will take impression of the arches and send to the lab to make the prosthesis.  On the day of extraction, the prosthesis is inserted immediately once the teeth are removed.   It’s normal to feel the soreness of the tissue under the prosthesis and it’s important to wear the immediate denture for 24 hours after the insertion.   The patient comes back on the next day for a follow up, then a few more times during the six month of healing.   Soft reline of the immediate denture is usually required when the denture feels loose within the six months.  

Six months after the bone remodeling is stabilized, the immediate denture can be converted to a definitive prosthesis with hard reline procedure or a new impression can be taken to fabricate a definitive prosthesis.  


  • Temporary prosthesis ( flipper, Ribbond bridge, Maryland bridge, Snap-on-smile, transitional partial denture etc )

Temporary prosthesis is usually indicated in situations when healing process of the bone and tissue are taking place before the final prosthesis can be made; or it takes time for the lab to fabricate the final prosthesis while the patient doesn’t want to go about without the front teeth; sometimes a temporary prosthesis is the necessary interim step to ensure the success of a complex restorative process.   There are a variety of types of temporary prosthesis and your dentist will help you decide which one to use based on your specific treatment needs.    

  • Reline of full and partial dentures

Reline of full and partial denture is a necessary step in the first 6 months of the healing process of your immediate denture and during the service life of your denture when they become loose.  Bone experiences fast loss during the early stage of the immediate prosthesis and slow and continuous loss under the definitive full and partial denture.  The consequence of bone loss under removable prosthesis is a gap appeared between the denture and the ridge and the prosthesis becomes loose.  

Your denture/partial denture should be checked at each recall visit for fit and your dentist will recommended if a reline becomes necessary.  Reline can be done chairside or in the lab,  a new layer of acrylic is placed on the tissue surface of the denture/partial denture and make the prosthesis fit  snugly on the ridge again.    

There are two types of reline material: soft reline and hard reline.  For tender and sore tissue, soft reline is recommended.  If you have full dentures, you should be getting hard relines every few years.  Leaving loose prosthesis unattended in the mouth and failure to reline as needed will result in excessive bone loss under the removable prosthesis.