Complete & Partial Dentures

A denture is a removable replacement for missing teeth and surrounding tissues. Two types of dentures are available -- complete dentures and partial dentures. Complete dentures are used when all the teeth are missing, while partial dentures are used when some natural teeth remain. Dentures are made after the existing teeth have been removed.

How Are Dentures Made?

The denture development process takes approximately three to six weeks and consist of several appointments. After determining what type is best for you, a series of impressions are taken by the staff at North East Dental Arts. Dr. Nuhfer will also take measurements of how your jaws relate to each other and how much space is between them.

Models will be created in the exact shape of the denture to be made. You will try these models several times and adjustments will be made as necessary. These models will be assessed for color, shape and fit before the final denture is cast.

What Do Dentures Feel Like?

New dentures may feel strange or loose for a few weeks until the muscles of your cheeks and tongue learn to keep them in place and you get comfortable with them. It is not unusual for minor irritation or soreness to occur and for saliva flow to increase when you first start wearing dentures but these problems will diminish as the mouth adjusts.

Eating with new dentures will take a little practice for a few weeks. To get used to the new denture, start with soft foods cut into small pieces. Chew slowly using both sides of your mouth and add other foods until you return to a normal diet. Be cautious with hot or hard foods and sharp-edged bones or shells and avoid foods that are extremely sticky.

Caring For Dentures

Proper denture care is important for the health of your dentures and your mouth. Handle dentures with care to avoid accidentally dropping them. Brush and rinse dentures daily. Like natural teeth, dentures must be brushed to remove food and plaque. Clean with a denture cleaner. Products with the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Acceptance are recommended since they have been evaluated for safety and effectiveness.

Never attempt to adjust or repair dentures yourself and never bend any part of the clasp or metal attachments. Doing so can weaken the metal structure. Dr. Nuhfer advises all patients to contact North East Dental Arts if a denture breaks, cracks, chips or one of the teeth becomes loose. Oftentimes, the necessary adjustment or repair can be made the same day. For complicated repairs, your denture may have to be sent to a dental lab.

Over time, dentures will need to be relined, rebased, or remade due to normal wear, and natural age-related changes to the face, jaw bones and gums. Regular dental visits are important so that dentures can be examined by Dr. Nuhfer to ensure proper fit.


Dr. Nuhfer recommends anyone considering complete dentures or partial dentures to contact North East Dental Arts for a personalized consultation. Most dental insurance providers cover some or all of the cost of dentures. You should contact your insurance provider for your plan specifics and to fully understand your financial obligations.

Dr. Nuhfer realizes that every patient is unique. She will take the time to explain complete and partial dentures along with any possible alternatives. She is committed to treating her patients with compassion, dignity and respect while helping them improve their oral health.

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