When to Choose a Partial Denture

Dentures And Partial Dentures Somerville, MA

People who need to replace missing teeth can usually choose from various options, such as a full or partial denture, dental bridge or dental implants. A partial denture may become a good choice to consider in several circumstances.

Facts about partial dentures

Partial dentures are artificial teeth attached to a base made to look similar to natural gums. Like dental bridges, they use the surrounding natural teeth as support, but unlike a fixed bridge, they can be removed by the patient.

Types of partial dentures

A traditional partial denture is supported by a metal framework and attached to the surrounding teeth with metal clasps. However, they can also be anchored to crowns on the adjacent teeth to provide a better fit and a more pleasing appearance. Additionally, some types can be made from non-metal materials for comfort, aesthetic or hypoallergenic reasons. Flexible dentures, which are made from a nylon base, have recently gained popularity with people who want a more natural appearance and increased level of comfort.

Benefits of partial dentures

When a person has missing teeth, the gaps can cause bite problems, lead to the remaining teeth shifting out of place, change the shape of the face and make it more difficult to speak and chew. Additionally, gaps in the teeth can provide more surface area for bacteria to accumulate, which may lead to further tooth loss. Replacing missing teeth helps prevent these issues.

Missing teeth can cause the gum and underlying bone to atrophy, which makes fitting and supporting dentures or tooth implants more difficult. Using a partial denture may decrease the amount of atrophy and preserve gum and bone that will be needed if full dentures or dental implants are desired in the future. 

Partial dentures are usually the most cost-effective tooth replacement option. They are also typically the fastest to obtain. Patients can often receive their appliance on the same day as the initial dental visit, which can help avoid the frustration of coping with missing teeth for months as sometimes is the case with other procedures. Because no surgery is needed for dentures, a lengthy recovery period is not required for the recipient.

When to choose partial dentures

Most patients can choose from several tooth replacement options. There are multiple scenarios in which a partial denture may provide a good choice: 

  • Most of the natural teeth are retained, and those teeth are healthy
  • The patient is not a candidate for dental implants
  • Cost is the primary concern
  • The patient wishes to replace missing teeth quickly or wants to avoid surgery
  • Easy removal of the replacement teeth is important 


Missing teeth can lead to a number of dental problems in addition to affecting the appearance of a person's smile and causing embarrassment. Most people can choose from several viable options for replacing missing teeth. Partial dentures can be a good choice for individuals who want a lower-cost, non-surgical and removable option, or who are not good candidates for other procedures such as dental implants. 

Request an appointment here: https://somervilledentist.com or call Assembly Dental at (857) 300-5779 for an appointment in our Somerville office.

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