illustration of snap on dentures

Is It Best to Get Tooth Extractions and Dentures?

If I lost most of my upper teeth, is it best to keep them or get them extracted for dentures? I’m currently wearing a cheap partial denture for my top teeth, and I’ve worn partial dentures since 2001. I’ve always hated the feel of my partial denture. Will a complete upper denture be more comfortable than my partial denture? I really don’t want to spend more than $6000, but I think it’s worth it because I am only 58 years old, and I am socially active with sports and non-profit organizations. Thank you. Winston from NJ


Dr. Burba would need to examine your mouth, teeth, x-rays, and other diagnostics to give you an accurate and comprehensive diagnosis. But we will provide you with some principles to consider.

Should You Get Tooth Extractions and Dentures?

Whether you should get tooth extractions and dentures depends on how many teeth remain, their condition, and how keeping them would affect your oral health.

It is better to save natural teeth

  • It is usually best to save natural teeth that will not harm your oral or overall health.
  • When most of your upper or lower teeth are missing, the forces of biting and chewing stress the few remaining teeth.

A complete upper denture is more comfortable than a lower one

Salem Snap on Denture
Snap-on Dentures
  • Suction keeps a full upper denture in place, so it does not move around as much as a lower denture.
  • A well-made upper complete removable denture is gentler on your teeth than a partial denture and a few remaining natural teeth.

Your jawbone shrinks when all your teeth are missing.

  • Teeth stimulate and preserve the jawbone. When all your teeth are missing, the jawbone shrinks.
  • When your lower jawbone shrinks, sharp ridges form and make wearing a denture uncomfortable. An upper denture—even with severe bone loss—is more comfortable.
  • Within 10 to 20 years, you will lack enough jawbone to support your facial muscles, and your face will sag.

What Can You Expect from Treatment Options?

Remember, Dr. Burba is basing his explanation on the information you provided. You will need to schedule an appointment with an implant dentist for an examination and 3-D CT scan to determine your treatment options.

  • Best clinical treatment – A dentist can replace your missing upper teeth with an implant-supported denture. Although the cost will exceed your budget, a snap-on denture is the most affordable implant denture. Dental implants will anchor your denture and stimulate your jawbone to prevent further shrinkage. Your denture will feel stable and comfortable.
  • Alternative treatment – Your dentist can extract your remaining upper teeth and replace them with a complete removable denture. It will look and feel better than your partial denture. It will be easier to speak and eat with a complete denture. If your budget allows it, a dentist can place two or more dental implants to secure your denture in the future.

Schedule a consultation with a dentist who has advanced implant and cosmetic dentistry training. Your denture will look natural, and if you decide to get implants, you will get quality results.

The Salem, Massachusetts, dentists at Burba Dental Partners sponsor this post.