Partial vs. Full Dentures: The Differences and Benefits

Have you ever wondered about the differences between partial dentures vs. full dentures?

Dentures are removable appliances made from synthetic materials, which replace missing teeth and help restore smiles. There are two main types: partial and full. While they both serve the purpose of replacing missing teeth, they are dissimilar in some ways.

If you want to know the differences between partial dentures vs. full dentures, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve gathered the information you need to know about them. If you’re ready, let’s get started.

What Is the Difference Between Partial and Full Dentures?

Partial and full dentures have several differences. As the name suggests, partial dentures replace a few missing teeth. Usually, dentists recommend them if you’ve lost at least three adjacent teeth, but they can also replace one tooth or two. On the other hand, full dentures replace all teeth.

Here are some of their other differences:


The process of getting partial dentures is almost the same as getting full dentures.

Both start with a dental visit. During this step, dentists assess the condition of teeth to see which type of denture is the most suitable to use. Next, they take dental impressions to ensure that dentures will fit perfectly. They will then bring the impression to a laboratory that fabricates dentures. Partial dentures take several days or weeks to get fabricated, while full dentures take weeks to months.


Another difference between partial dentures vs. full dentures is that they have different types. The different types of partial dentures include:

  • Metal Frame Dentures – They are the most common type of partial denture. They consist of high-quality synthetic teeth and a cast metal frame attached to existing teeth using a metal clasp.
  • Acrylic Base Dentures – They are the most affordable type of partial denture. They are temporary dentures worn until a permanent one gets fabricated. Labs use thick acrylic in making them, which may sometimes cause speech problems.
  • Flexible Partial Dentures – They are also temporary partial dentures with a base made of thin plastic, making them generally lighter than other denture types. Their flesh-colored clasp makes them look natural.
  • Fixed Bridges – They are non-removable partial dentures used to replace missing teeth surrounded by other healthy teeth. They’re usually fixed to dental crowns on the adjacent teeth.

The different types of full dentures include:

  • Immediate Full Dentures – They are temporary full dentures that allow gums to heal and can be worn after tooth extraction until it’s time to switch to a permanent one.
  • Conventional Full Dentures – They are custom-made full dentures fabricated to fit every patient’s mouth perfectly. They look, perform, and feel like natural teeth meant for permanent use.
  • Implant-Supported Overdenture – They are full dentures meant for long-term use. As the name implies, they are supported and held securely by implants for more stability.


One of the major differences between partial dentures vs. full dentures is the cost. As expected, full dentures are more expensive. Partial dentures usually cost around $600 to $2500, while full dentures range from $600 to $15000.


Life expectancy is also one of the differences between partial dentures vs. full dentures. When taken care of, partial dentures can last for up to 15 years. Full dentures, on the other hand, have a lifespan that ranges from five to 10 years.

Post-Procedure Adjustment

It’s normal to feel uncomfortable during the first few days of wearing new dentures. It usually takes a few days or weeks for you to get used to partial dentures. When it comes to wearing full dentures, you might need a few weeks or months to adjust to them.

Benefits of Dentures

Now that we’ve answered the question, “What is the difference between partial and full dentures?” it’s time to learn about how dentures can help you. Here are some of the benefits of wearing them:

1. They can boost your confidence.

Some people are afraid to smile due to tooth loss. Some even withdraw from social gatherings and other activities for the same reason. With dentures, you can replace your missing teeth and help you regain the confidence to smile again.

2. They are easy to clean.

Both removable and non-removable dentures are easy to clean. There are denture cleanser tablets you can use to clean removable dentures. You can wear your dentures again after a few minutes of soaking.

For non-removable dentures, you only need to practice proper dental hygiene. Brush twice a day using a soft-bristled toothbrush and floss at least once a day.

3. They help prevent other problems.

Tooth loss can cause different problems, such as oral bone structure disintegration, gum disease, and facial muscle degradation. Dentures provide support for your jaw bone and facial muscles, which helps prevent these problems from developing.

4. They can improve your speech.

Teeth are vital for proper speech. People who suffer from tooth loss also suffer from difficulty pronouncing some words. Wearing dentures can help improve your speech.

5. They lessen food restrictions.

Some foods are hard to eat without natural teeth. Good thing dentures can help! They can reduce food restrictions and allow you to enjoy eating your favorite food.

Sunrise Dentistry Is Here to Help

If you’ve lost one, two, or all your teeth, Sunrise Dentistry is here to help you.

We have the best Durango, CO, dentists who can conduct an in-depth teeth assessment and determine whether you need partial or full dentures. Contact us today for any inquiries.