Denture Retention

Denture Retention

Improving Retention in Dentures

Have you ever delivered a new or recently relined denture that seems to fit okay but could use better retention? We have a simple solution. Instead of relining, we recommend extending the post dam area with compound chairside. We find that in most every case of this nature, the denture is adapted well to the palate, but that typically there was a discrepancy in the distal extension of the impression. By using compound to deepen and extend from the buccal of the hammular notch across the soft palate to the buccal of the other hammular notch, we can regain maximum retention. Once this task is completed chairside, send the denture to the lab and we will convert the compound to acrylic same day.

This is an example of why capturing all anatomical landmarks are critical at the start of any denture case. Denture impressions need different information than C&B impressions in order to create the suction necessary to properly retain a denture. Whereas it is critical to capture an accurate impression of the margin for a crown, it is critical to properly capture the vestibule for a complete denture. We always recommend using plenty of impression material to capture the entire vestibule all the way back to the hamular notches and retro molar pads. Don’t be shy and load that tray up!

In the case that you do need to reline, we also always recommend verifying your impression to check for adequate suction so that your patient gets the retention they need. You do this by removing the impression, rinsing the impression and then replacing the impression back into the patient’s mouth. More specifically, here are some steps to follow:

  • 2mm thick of material is optimal
  • Relieve denture base to accommodate the material if necessary (where impression material has been displaced and any undercuts)
  • Border mould with compound or impression material
  • Drill a hole with a #8 bur in the rugae (uppers) and take reline impression
  • Have the patient close into occlusion with light pressure
  • Verify your impression by removing, rinsing and then replacing the impression back into the patients mouth to check for adequate suction

Happy relining!