Partial Flexible Dentures (Valplast)
I have to say I am not a great fan of flexible dentures as you cannot successfully add teeth to them. On occasion, they are the best option to solve a problem by having a more Flexi grip (where the pink base is extended to wrap around the real teeth to hold them in place) for a few cases I get. The base (the pink part) is made of thermoplastic (like nylon), a completely different material to the denture teeth made of hard acrylic/composite, which causes a problem as they are not chemically bonded together. The teeth are held in place with holes drilled through them that the flexible pink is moulded through, thus creating problems with staining between the two non bonded materials. Also, having seen many patients coming in with flexible dentures they have had for some time, they seem to go furry, stained and rough. I have been to lectures lead by top specialist hospital prosthodontists that refuse to make them stating that they are far less hygienic than all other kinds of dentures. Patients ask me to polish and clean them, but I can never achieve the “almost new” look like chrome or acrylic dentures.
The other thing is that they are the same in “bulk” thickness as well made acrylic dentures without the thin advantages of chrome dentures. So ok, flexible sounds great and is marketed to great effect with the “unbreakable” slogan, but I make more patients chrome dentures that had problems with flexible dentures than I have made new Flexible dentures to date.
There are, however, continual developments in this area trying to improve the bonding to denture teeth and the capability to add new teeth to flexible dentures.