This study investigated the masticatory rehabilitation of subjects wearing different types of prostheses. Biting abilities per person (biting force, biting pressure and occlusal contact area) were assessed with a pressure detecting sheet (Prescale®). Five hundred and ninety volunteers were divided into four groups according to the type of posterior dentition: complete denture, removable partial denture, fixed partial denture, and full natural dentition groups. The biting forces of the fixed partial, removable partial and complete denture wearers were 80, 35 and 11% respectively, when expressed as a percentage of the subjects with a natural dentition. The complete denture wearers showed the highest biting pressure among the four groups, followed by the removable partial denture wearers. In a clinical intra-individual study, the biting abilities of 85 subjects, without (before insertion of) and with (after insertion of) renewed prostheses, were compared. No significant differences were found between biting before and immediately after insertion of the prostheses. However, the biting force, and occlusal contact area increased 2 months after insertion of the prostheses. This study confirmed past clinical studies indicating an impaired masticatory function of denture wearers. The functional adaptation to new prostheses had improved at evaluation 2 months after insertion.
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