Removable partial dentures had an important place in dental treatment in the past. However, with the introduction of dental implants, partial dentures should really be used in only very limited cases. If you have a partial denture, aka a “flipper,” and you’re unhappy with it, dental implants are a better option.
Why People Don’t Like Partial Dentures
There are many common reasons why people don’t like partial dentures, such as:
- Unnatural appearance
- Poorly fixed
- Little function–most have to take them out for eating
- Frequent cleanings required
Partial dentures don’t look or feel like your natural teeth. They can generally be spotted by people, partly because they come loose often (why do you think people call them “flippers”?). And because they come loose, they’re not good for eating.
And if you do try to eat with them, you have to clean them right away–food gets underneath them almost every time.
We’re Not a Fan, Either
But it’s not just the wearers of partial dentures that don’t like them. Dentists aren’t really happy with them, either. It’s partly because they give poor results to our patients–you–and we want to make you happy.
But that’s not all. Partial dentures have hooks and clasps that go around your teeth to “secure” them. These hooks and clasps wear against your teeth and irritate your gums. This can increase tooth decay risk, and lead to receding gums, both of which put your teeth in jeopardy. It’s not worth it to damage healthy, natural teeth for a restoration that doesn’t make you happy.
And, all the while, bone is being removed under the partial denture. Some bone is going to be lost anyway since the tooth is gone, but the irregular pressure from the partial denture can actually speed bone loss in the area.
Dental Implants Are Better for You
Dental implants, though, are a much better way to restore your teeth. They look just like natural teeth and pretty much feel like them, too. You don’t have to take them out and clean them after every meal–and you can even eat with them in. In the long run, dental implants can improve your health.
Considering all these benefits, we strongly recommend dental implants over removable partial dentures, and if you have partial dentures, we think you’ll be happier if you get implants.