“Can my broken denture be repaired?”
This is the distressed call often received from patients – and in 95% of the cases, this answer is yes, it can be fixed.
Often denture repairs can be done within one working day, although contrary to popular belief, dental technicians do not just glue the broken pieces together.
The denture repair process has many steps that I would like to highlight here.
1. The two (or more) pieces are temporarily glued together by the technician. It is critical that the pieces are glued together in the correct position or when the repair is completed the denture will be lopsided.
2. A dental stone model or silicone matrix is made of the broken pieces to ensure they can be re-broken, prepared and re-attached at a later date. The technician must take special care to not move the broken piece when pouring this dental model
3. When the stone model has set, the glued pieces can be re-broken, ground and prepared using tungsten carbide and stone burs. Retention grooves are made in the acrylic to help the new material to bond.
4. In the meantime, the stone model is prepared with seperator solution and the broken pieces are re-attached to the stone model.
5. Liquid acrylic is now added to the broken areas of the denture, into the retention grooves and of sufficient thickness to give the new bond strength.
6. The denture is now processed and cured under heat and pressure. Once processed, the denture must be ground, finished and polished to ensure no rough areas cut into the patients tongue.
So, next time your denture breaks, take pity on the dental technician who needs to urgently repair this intricate device
My next blog will look at why dentures break and what can be done to prevent them from breaking again?
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