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Dental Flipper

Dental Flipper

A dental flipper is an inexpensive but temporary alternative to dental implants or other permanent solutions. This HealthHearty article helps you learn about the pros and cons of a dental flipper and whether to opt for it or not.
Ashwini Kulkarni Sule
Last Updated: Feb 8, 2018
Injuries, dental decay, periodontal diseases etc., can all lead to loss of teeth. There are various ways in which, missing teeth can be replaced. Dentures, bridges, dental implants, are some of the popular tooth replacement options. However, all these methods are highly expensive, hence, often out of reach of common people. Besides, the treatment time is also longer, wherein, it takes weeks before the person is actually fixed with false teeth. All this while, the individual has to go without teeth. A dental flipper can be a great option in this case.
What is a Dental Flipper
As mentioned above, a dental flipper is a good replacement option for partial dentures. It is basically a pink acrylic plate with artificial teeth. A measurement of your jaw is taken and a mold is made. The spaces for missing teeth are replaced with artificial teeth. Their color is matched with your natural teeth color. The plate is then snapped with pink acrylic snaps to the gums and between the teeth. For an additional cost, you can also get wires with tiny balls, which secure the plate in your mouth. The plate sits snugly against your palate or under the tongue, depending upon the position of the missing teeth.
Advantages
Flippers are extremely lightweight and very convenient to use. All you have to do is, position them in place and secure the snaps. A flipper suffices your need for replacement teeth on an urgent basis. Besides, they are cheaper than dental bridge or dental implant. Typically, a flipper costs you about $300 - $500. They do not hinder your talking ability. Although, you need to take them off while eating, there are certain foods, which can be eaten without removing your fake teeth.
They can be a good option in case you have unhealthy or decaying teeth on the sides of missing tooth. Since, dental implants are supported with the help of adjacent teeth, such weak teeth do not make you a good candidate for dental implants. They are often recommended for teenagers, who cannot yet go for permanent tooth replacement procedures. Also, adding new teeth on the acrylic plate is very easy, if you miss any more of your teeth!
Drawbacks
A dental flipper is only considered as a temporary option of tooth replacement. However, some people keep wearing them for years, without any major trouble. Usage of dental flippers for such extended period is not recommended, as they press against your gums, which may affect the health of gums permanently. Besides, their care is another issue, which needs to be considered.
Acrylic is highly brittle, hence, it may break off easily while eating or talking. A good solution to this problem could be using valplast plates instead of acrylic. Valplast is more flexible, and comes as a translucent plate, so that it can be well hidden. Some people may even think that the cost of dental flippers is pretty high considering its temporary stature.
The wire clasps, which are used to secure flippers in place may not be kept entirely invisible. Besides, as the gums resorb, there is a need for realignment of false teeth, since they tend to sink beneath their normal level. People may also experience some discomfort during the initial days.
Thus, dental flippers should only be considered as a temporary option until you get permanent alternatives.