Image:What goes up doesn’t always come down!

What goes up doesn’t always come down!

How do dentures stay up or down? Full top plates typically stay up using suction. To illustrate this why not grab a cup or mug (empty preferably!) and position it so that it covers your mouth completely. Now suck in. The seal created by your mouth and the air seal helps the cup to stay up. Well, a denture staying up is principally the same. A good denture maker will ensure you get a really nice seal in your mouth such that the denture will stay up.

Ok, so that’s for top full plates. How about a bottom full plate? I marvel day after day at how patients can actually wear their bottom plates. If you were to ask 9 out of 10 dental professionals across many specialities, they would more than likely concur that a full bottom denture is an enigma that few can tame. Literally, a patients’ allies are gravity, the tongue pushing it out and the cheeks and other muscles pushing it back to the centre. This equalising move seeks to place the denture in what the dental fraternity calls the ‘neutral zone’. It’s quite a juggling act and somehow the human resilience manages to not only push through these challenges but also thrive. It is true that some suction can be achieved on bottom dentures and you will hear about purported techniques to achieves this all over the industry. In my experience, I feel that these results are few and far between. This is where implants really come to the fore. An implant denture for a full bottom plate is a life changing experience. I have helped many patients unable or simply fighting just to eat with this method. Sure, it’s a long road and there are certainly some parameters that a patient must meet to be eligible, but boy the results are well worth it!

In the realms of the partial denture world there are a myriad of solutions to keeping the plate in place. Generally, these circle around the notion of retainers in an assortment of different types of metals. These days with new flexible denture technologies we can create metal free smiles. Its certainly not for everyone and I generally don’t recommend them beyond 2 or 3 teeth restorations, however, they are a very good option in many instances.

Have a chat with your friendly dental expert today about how to make dentures stay up or down! If you would like any help or information, I can be reached on the below email address.

Happy smiling :)


Author Leif Svensson is the founding prosthetist of EverythingDentures. For more information feel free to send the author an email on