What is resorption?

A Denturist can help you understand the circumstances involved in ill-fitting, loose or broken dentures. After your teeth are extracted, you will suffer bone loss over time. As you can see in the images below, your jaw-bones will shrink (bone resorption), which will alter the comfort, fit and effectiveness of your dentures. 

Once the natural teeth have been extracted, the stimulation of the mastication forces that were transferred to the surrounding bone tissue by the roots of the teeth have been lost and as a result the underlying bone and soft tissue starts shrinking away.  This process called resorption, stabilizes after a few months and becomes quite gradual, although it carries on for life. As a result of resorption the immediate denture typically gets very loose and the fitting surface of the denture needs to be filled up after a few months.

Thereafter the shrinkage stabilizes, but your lower jaw is in a constant state of resorption, from the day you have your natural dentition extracted, and for the duration of your natural life. This bone loss occurs at different rates from patient to patient, but for most, it is a measurable change every two to five years.

 People who have no more natural teeth left, lose on average 1 mm of jawbone height each year. Gum tissues (ridges) shrink along with jawbones-up to 1/2" in 10 years. This is what makes your denture loose. Not all of these situations will require a new denture. Symptoms of less stability when chewing, food entrapment under plates, or more frequent sore spots are common indications change has taken place. Some patients experience no noticeable symptoms at all, but never the less that shrinkage factor is ongoing. Ill-fitting dentures, left unchecked can lead to more rapid loss of ridge, making it more difficult for patients to wear dentures in later years.




A reline or rebase may resolve your problem. The requirement for relining occurs when bone and tissues change due to shrinkage.

Possible causes may be:  

  • Post immediate dentures
  • Tooth loss
  • Weight loss
  • Bone loss in the upper or lower jaw
  • Sickness or disease 
  • General physiological aging

The bite position, existing teeth and acrylic base(s) must be in good condition and not worn or stained to provide a reline procedure. An impression of your oral tissue is taken inside the fitting-surface of your denture(s) to provide a working model. New acrylic base material is added to your denture to fill up the space created by shrinkage to produce a correct fit. Though the denture will be fitting more securely, the appearance of your dentures in your mouth will not change.

A Denturist is the ideal service provider for the relining of immediate dentures because one and the same person does the clinical and technical work. Likewise, any adjustments that might be needed to the occlusal surfaces or muscle trimming and flange contours. 


When rebasing a denture, Denturists in most cases have no way of trying the denture(s). The procedure is similar to relining. The difference being, that a rebase replaces all the pink-acrylic denture base material. The existing teeth remain in the exact same place relative to the position of the ridge.

Reasons for rebase procedure: 

  • Broken denture
  • Weakened or old pink denture base
  • Immediate denture


Dentures are made from specialized materials, specially formulated for the purpose. Despite the addition of various fillers and ongoing research to improve the physical, aesthetical and microbiological properties of artificial acrylic dentures during normal usage, does not guarantee that they are unbreakable. Dentures should be considered as delicate and may break if dropped. When they slip out of your hand during cleaning procedures, a broken tooth or fracture often occurs. Repairs restore a fractured or damaged denture close to its original condition. Most Denturists can provide denture repair procedures on a same day basis or sometimes even while you wait. Your Denturist will advise you of the condition of your denture and the necessary steps needed in preventing further breakage. You may also leave your broken denture at a Dental Surgery, where the Receptionist will make arrangements with a Dental Laboratory to come and collect the denture, do the repair and deliver it back to the Dental Surgery, where you may fetch it again, at a later stage.