Dentures can break. The best advice when this happens is to avoid repairing the denture yourself. This is because once products such as; superglue are introduced to the fracture surfaces it can melt the edges preventing the accurate relocation of the two sides.
Reasons why dentures break vary considerably and the long term success of a repair may also be questionable.
A Clean Break
Clean breaks caused by dropping a denture can be repaired with the long-term result likely to be successful.
A broken tooth
Teeth that have broken off the denture can usually be repaired successfully. However if it has come off a metal partial denture this can be trickier to repair as it may require a pin to be welded onto the framework to aid retention of the tooth.
There maybe the requirement for small adjustments to the bite if a completely new tooth is to be added to a denture rather than reattaching an original tooth.
For much older dentures where porcelain teeth are present reattaching a porcelain tooth may not be possible as porcelain does not bond to acrylic however modern denture teeth are made from acrylic which allows them to bond with the denture material.
A snapped clasp
If the clasp has broken on an acrylic partial denture, repair may be possible via the addition of a new clasp. However if the clasp has broken on a cast metal denture the repair is much trickier as the clasp is not easily bonded back onto the framework.
Other fractures can cause greater difficulty and may not reproduce reliable long term results.
Old Worn Down Teeth
Dentures with old and worn down teeth can result in an incorrect chewing pattern and uneven distribution of biting forces. In some cases the surfaces of the teeth may be able to be adjusted to provide even contact throughout the arch. However, often the teeth are too severely worn and may not be able to be adjusted to a satisfactory state.
Bone and Gum Shrinkage
Shrinkage of the bone and supporting gums in the mouth can happen gradually and will almost definitely occur after teeth are extracted. It will often take place without detection resulting in a denture that is no longer fully supported by the mouth. Without the proper support and fit, the denture moves about and stress concentration can develop. These stresses cause the denture to fracture under normal chewing patterns. Repairing the denture is possible, however the fracture can reoccur at any time because the denture remains unsupported. In this situation the denture may require a reline, not a repair.
Lower Front Teeth Remain
Only having front lower teeth remaining and no premolars/molars at the back can cause all of the biting forces to be concentrated at the front of the upper denture. This can cause it to crack or break easily. Ideally, lower back teeth need to be in place for eating and sharing of the occlusal forces. The denture can be repaired but fractures can occur again without warning.
Other potential damage caused by lower front teeth remaining may include:
Bone damage to the upper jaw (irreversible) which may result in spongy tissue under the upper denture to develop.
Hastened bone and gum shrinkage (irreversible)
Please do not hesitate to contact our friendly team for a free consultation.
Denture Care Services
photo credit: Denture Care Services.