If you are a wearer of economy dentures, the chances are you have a lot of old pairs lying around. If you are an environmentally-minded individual, it may one day occur to you to try to recycle them. There may be some chance of recycling partial dentures , but, in general, full dentures cannot be recycled.

Partial Dentures vs. Full Dentures

The reason why partial dentures can often be recycled, while full dentures cannot is the metal. Partial dentures often have a great deal of metal in them, and since precious metals are the most inert, partial dentures are often made with a significant amount of precious metals like gold, platinum, and others. Some companies will melt the dentures down and sell the metal.

A Japanese company has been doing this for charity, and in 2008 they speculated that if every partial denture in Japan were donated, it would amount to more than $68 million dollars each year! In the US, Eyes for the Needy used to take partial dentures with the same rationale. Currently, though, the company’s website doesn’t mention dentures at all, and they may not accept partial dentures anymore, although they continue to accept other metal objects that they melt down.

Full dentures , on the other hand, are just made of plastic, and because the plastic is not a recyclable type, they cannot be recycled and just have to be discarded.

Why Do You Have So Many Dentures?

If you have a drawer full of economy dentures, or have to discard your dentures so often that it occurs to you to wonder about recycling them, maybe you are going through your dentures too fast. Dentures should give you good fit for ten years or more, but if you start out with a set of economy dentures, you may find they last you far less than that.

They may fit poorly to begin with, but they often fit worse and worse with time. Because economy dentures put uneven, unnatural pressure on your jawbone, it may atrophy, which causes it to lose mass, so your dentures won’t fit as well after a little while. This leads to numerous discarded dentures.

Higher quality dentures may be more expensive to begin with, but sometimes, like The Denture Fountain of Youth®, they can provide even pressure across your jawbone, preventing bone loss and ensuring a longer fit.

For a set of dentures you won’t have to worry about recycling, please contact Smile Columbia Dentistry in Columbia, SC today.