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What Are Chrome Dentures? Cost, Benefits, and Appearance

Contributors:  

What do chrome dentures look like, and how do they compare to acrylic dentures? When it comes to replacing missing teeth, there are all sorts of dentures to consider. And, when you're trying to make the best choice for your needs, multiple options can get a little confusing.

But, we want to make sure you have all the information to help you make the right decision. So if you want to know more about chrome dentures, this article will answer the following questions, and more:

dentures chrome
A cobalt chrome denture fitted in the upper mouth
  • What are chrome dentures?
  • How much do chrome dentures cost?
  • How do chrome dentures compare to acrylic dentures?
  • What are the pros and cons of chrome false teeth?

As you may or may not already know, false teeth are the most common, and most affordable way to replace missing teeth. Whether you are getting full or partial dentures, the material they are made from can make a difference, depending on your needs.

So, let's get started.

What is a chrome denture?

Chrome dentures are usually partial dentures or single tooth dentures that have a metal framework that supports false teeth. Complete dentures are rarely made from metal. This is because chrome dentures generally require support from your remaining natural teeth to fit securely.

You may be wondering if dentures are more obvious when made from metal. Well the good news is, they aren't because they are designed to be unnoticeable when inside the mouth.

This is either achieved by the metal structures being lighter, less bulky and more easily hidden when worn. And, in some caes the metal parts are covered by plastic gum and teeth.

Depending on the shape of the denture, metal can be used to make both the clasps and the palate. In a chrome denture the clasps are commonly made from cobalt chrome. This means that the palate and the clasps can be cast together, adding to the strength and durability.

An acrylic denture can also be made with metal clasps. However, these clasps are made from stainless steel and not as strong.

Cobalt chrome dentures

Cobalt chrome is a medically approved, light alloy metal. It is the strongest and most durable metal that can be used to make a denture that doesn't irritate the gums and mouth. However, they are not suitable for patients with metal allergies.

dentures chrome
A cobalt chrome partial denture

What do chrome dentures look like?

Chrome dentures have a quite obvious metal framework, with plastic false teeth and gums attached to them. Or, they can look like plastic removable gums and teeth with metal clasps attached.

How much do chrome dentures cost?

The price for a chrome denture is roughly between £600 and £1,500, depending on the denture and the dental practice. Compared to plastic dentures, they are considerably more expensive. This is because the raw material costs more, and metal dentures take longer to make.

Are chrome dentures better than acrylic?

If you have no remaining teeth, then acrylic dentures are probably the best option for you. This is because a metal denture generally needs support from your remaining teeth. However, if you only need a partial denture then a chrome denture is much better quality and should fit better.

full dentures picture
Full dentures are commonly made with acrylic

Cobalt chrome is a lighter, stronger and more durable material, meaning it is much more comfortable than plastic, which can feel bulky in comparison. Metal dentures can also be made to fit precisely to the patient's mouth and therefore more securely.

A chrome denture is made to be overall much more discreet when worn and more confidence-inspiring when eating and speaking.

Another alternative to consider is a flexible denture, which is also much more comfortable than an acrylic denture. Although is also more costly than the traditional acrylic denture, and not generally available on the NHS.

Pros and cons of chrome dentures?

Cobalt chrome dentures are considered high quality when it comes to false teeth. So it's safe to say there are quite a few advantages to choosing them. They are lighter, yet stronger and more durable meaning they should last much longer than acrylic dentures. However, they do come with some disadvantages as well.

The main disadvantage is that they are more costly than the traditional acrylic denture. But, you could argue that you pay for what you get. Another important point to consider is that they are more difficult to adjust if your mouth changes shape, or if you need to have more extractions in the future.

The following table shows a summary of the pros and cons of chrome dentures:

Pros

Cons

Stronger, and more durable 

Difficulty adjusting them 

Colalt chrome is a lighter material

Difficult to add teeth later on 

They generally fit better and feel more comfortable 

They take longer to make than acrylic dentures

They are designed to be hidden in the mouth, and feel less bulky than plastic false teeth 

They are more expensive 

They have better support, so feel more secure when eating and speaking

The appearance of the metal framework and palette are not a natural colour (even though they are made to be unnoticable) 

You may need to be more careful when cleaning dentures with metal parts, but if you make sure to follow your dentist's instructions there shouldn't be a problem. Make sure you don't leave your dentures overnight in Steradent or other denture cleaners and follow manufacturer guidelines when using denture products.

Can you get chrome dentures on the NHS?

The short answer is, no, you can't get a chrome denture on the NHS unless there is a medical need for them. This is because the raw materials cost more, and they are difficult to alter if you have more extractions in the future.

You are most likely to get plastic dentures as your first option on the NHS, which aren't always a perfect fit. Or, if clinically necessary you will be given the option of a chrome denture. So, you will need to go for private treatment if you are considering a higher quality denture before trying acrylic removable teeth.

Conclusion

Chrome dentures are high quality but more costly

Cobalt chrome dentures are generally partial dentures and it is uncommon for a full denture to be made with metal. This is because they replace missing teeth while being supported by your remaining natural teeth. They look as you might expect them to, plastic teeth attached to a metal framework and clasps.

If you are considering cobalt chrome dentures, they are considered to be gold standard quality but are much more expensive. You will have to seek private treatment for chrome dentures, but prices to range from practice to practice so shop around first. The NHS only provides them if they are medically needed.

There are both advantages and disadvantages to a chrome denture, but overall the pros far outweigh the cons. If you are considering cobalt chrome dentures, book a consultation with your dentist to discuss further if they are the right choice to fit your needs.

What Are Chrome Dentures? Cost, Benefits, and Appearance
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Contributors:
Amanda combines her medical background with her love for writing to bring you informed and accurate content at Dentaly.org.
Sources
NHS. Dentures (false teeth). Consulted on 15th June 2021. Dentures. How Much Do Dentures Cost? Consulted on 15th June 2021.