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Crowns, Bridges, Dentures, Implants

Upper denture and gagging

11/13/2007

Question:

I have a upper denture with a portion of the pallet cut out so I won`t gag. My new dentist says I will lose bone if I do not get a full pallet no cut out. This has me upset.

Do you agree with this. Thank You.

Answer:

It is true that dentures are ususally supported by both the roof of the mouth (hard palette) and the bone under where the teeth are located (residual ridge), and we would prefer to have the palette as part of the denture. I am not aware of any evidence that you will lose more bone without the palette, however; the absence of a palette would place the enitre load on the bone under where the teeth are located instead of sharing it with the roof of the mouth.

So, I suppose it is possible. It is preferred to at least try wearing a denture with a palette. It sometimes takes time to get used to. Gagging can also be caused by overextension of the denture in a posterior direction. It would be best if you were evaluated by a prosthodontist who has had more training with dentures.

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Response by:

Nancy L Clelland, DMD, MSD Nancy L Clelland, DMD, MSD
Professor of Restorative & Prosthetic Dentistry
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University