Acrylic (plastic) dentures consist of the denture teeth attached to an acrylic base plate. The stability (i.e. rocking) and the retention (i.e. how well they grip and stay in place) are reliant on three things:
- The denture fitting closely and tightly against the gums and natural teeth (Upper dentures use mainly suction to stay in place and lower dentures the gums and muscles)
- The use of wrought metal clasps (retainers) to grip the teeth
- In cases where only a few teeth remain, a well fitting base plate, covering as much of the hard tissue, (that's the jawbone, palate and/or ridges) in your mouth as possible.
They are the best option when:
- Lots of changes are expected or needed as time progresses
- As a training denture before having to wear a full denture
- A tooth has been lost through trauma
- A tooth has been extracted as they are easily relined as the gum heals
- A temporary solution is required as part of a more extensive course of treatment, such as implants
Advantages of having acrylic dentures
- Least investment required
- Easy to alter such as adding a tooth or relining
- Easiest type to take in and out.
Disadvantages of acrylic dentures
- Least grip (retention)
- Least stable
- Often bigger and more bulky
- Requires more muscle control
- Have a tendency to break more easily
- Design has to cover the palate if teeth are missing on both sides of the upper arch, this affects detecting temperature and the chewing experience.