Partial dentures can be made numerous different ways and with various materials, each with advantages and disadvantages:
Flipper: A Flipper is a partial denture that is made of acrylic to replace one missing tooth or several missing teeth. A flipper sometimes has a couple metal hooks to help hold it in place. Flippers can be made quickly and are typically used on a temporary basis. They should not be used permanently, because the materials are not as durable as those used in the other partial denture types described below.
Cast Partial Dentures:
Flexible Partial Denture (aka Valplast Partial Denture): Flexible Partial Dentures are made of a special, flexible plastic material. The material will match your gum color and teeth perfectly, providing a very esthetic and natural look. The best way to imagine the feel of the material is to think of the material used for the orange traffic cones used on streets. The most popular brand is Valplast. (Learn more about Valplast Partial Dentures.)
Implant Partial Dentures: Dental implants can be used to help hold in a partial denture. (Learn more about implant partial dentures.)
How implants have changed the way I make dentures:
Over twenty-five years ago, my wife and I moved to south Florida from Boston, where I attended and taught at Tufts Dental School. My office has been located in the Boynton Beach and Delray Beach area since moving to Palm Beach County. In my practice, implant dentures have become a common dental procedure. New patients will present to our office with an ill-fitting denture or partial denture. We are often able to use dental implants to drastically improve its comfort and fit. The implants serve as an anchor and hold the denture in place while chewing and speaking. Quite honestly, our patients typically cannot understand how they used to cope with their old denture before implants. If you have an uncomfortable denture or you are considering a new denture, partial denture or implant denture, we would gladly provide a complimentary evaluation: