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Upper Denture
Upper Denture  

Upper Denture
Upper Denture  
Hi Dr. Finnk,

     I currently wear upper dentures and had a horse shoe pattern made to reduce gagging. So far the denture adhesive cream is holding them securely. Unfortunately, I am still gagging on occasion. My dentist needs to trim back or thin more but neither one of us knows where exactly. I've enclosed two pictures. Any chance that you might be able to determine where my dentures should be thinned or trimmed?


Dear Glenn,

There is no "where, exactly."  The standard denture is made to cover the full palate, all the way back to the junction between the hard and soft palate, and into the depths of the distobuccal fossae.  Because some patients do not tolerate their denture ending so far back on the roof of their mouth, dentures modified like yours have become acceptable, even though they are not as secure as are the standard.

Tell your dentist he can continue cutting away until you are able to wear your teeth.  I will also suggest that you consider having implants placed to anchor your denture, once you adjust them to where they are comfortable for you.  Once implants are placed, your dentures can be reduced down to the horseshoe shape needed to retain the teeth in the pink acrylic.

Let me know how this goes for you.  


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Howard Finnk, D.D.S., P.A., CEO


I am a Family, Implant and Cosmetic dentist. I will answer questions on any aspect of dentistry and matters relating to the smile, gums, jaws and lower face. Member American Dental Association, Florida Dental Association, Broward County Dental Association, and Atlantic Coast District Dental Association. I have served as District Council Member of Alpha Omega, as well as serving for one term as its President. I am also a member of The Vedder Honors Society, Broward Dental Research Clinic, and Mount Sinai Hospital Guild. I have served as a Volunteer for Project Dental Health and The Tri-County Dental Health Council.


Having attained over 30 years of clinical experience in private practice in Michigan, in 2001 I was re-certified by taking and passing the Florida State Dental Board Examination. After moving to Florida, I spent nearly 10 years re-honing my skills while working as an Associate Dentist for several large dental groups. In September, 2004, I was appointed Adjunct Clinical Professor at Nova University's College of Dental Medicine. I am certified in placement of Mini Dental Implants, and I am Director of The Florida Implant Center ( On March 1, 2010, at the age of 62, I began all over again by buying a dental practice near my home in the Fort Lauderdale area. As sole owner and Chief Dental Officer of the new Nob Hill Dental Center (, I can now carefully provide dental care to patients who care, all within a caring, joyful environment. Over my career lifetime, I have provided thousands of diagnoses, fillings, crowns, bridges, root canals, periodontal treatments, TMJ therapies, partials, dentures and extractions, and dozens of implants for my patients. The only aspect of dentistry with which I have very little experience is orthodontics.

American Dental Association, Florida Dental Association, Broward County Dental Association, Atlantic Coast District Dental Society, Vedder Honors Society, Broward Dental Research Clinic, Alpha Omega Alumni Association, and American Association of Dental Implantologists. Formerly, American Academy of General Dentistry, Michigan Dental Association, Macomb Dental Society, Detroit District Dental Society, Tri-County Dental Health Council (a charitable dental care organization)

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Bachelor of Arts and Sciences in Psychology from Wayne State University Doctor of Dental Surgery from University of Detroit College of Dentistry Adjunct Clinical Professor, Special Needs Department, Nova Southeastern University College of Dental Medicine, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

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