How to remove the palate from dentures

Palateless dentures, also known as horseshoe dentures, are a modern alternative to conventional maxillary (upper) dentures that eliminates the coverage of the palate. These dentures are designed to provide a more natural and comfortable experience for wearers.

Traditional dentures consist of an acrylic base that covers the gums and a prosthetic framework that supports artificial teeth. The palate (roof of the mouth), is typically covered by the denture base to provide stability and retention. However, a covered soft palate poses various challenges to denture wearers, including the diminished ability to taste and experience their food.

By removing the palate from the denture, individuals can enjoy improved speech, taste sensation, and overall oral comfort. A denture wearer with sensitive gag reflexes might also find it more convenient to wear a plateless appliance.

So how can you remove the palate from your dentures to enjoy these benefits?

Removing the Palate from Dentures via Heat-Curing Technique

The heat-curing technique is a commonly used method to remove the palate from dentures. This process involves using heat to soften the denture material, allowing the dentist or dental technician to reshape and remove the palate portion.

Step-by-step procedure for removing the palate

Step 1: Design of the plateless denture

With CAD/CAM technology, a digital model of the denture is generated based on the patient’s specific oral anatomy. The software allows the dentist or dental technician to design a denture without the palate, ensuring an accurate fit and optimal comfort for the wearer.

Step 2: Soften the acrylic material

The denture is placed in a special oven or flask that heats it to a precise temperature. The heat softens the acrylic material, making it malleable and easier to work with.

Step 3: Carefully removing the palate material

The dentist or dental technician carefully removes the softened acrylic material that covers the palate, using specialized instruments. This process requires precision and skill to ensure the denture maintains its integrity and fits accurately.

Step 4: Proper fit assessment and adjustment

Ensuring a proper fit is crucial for the long-term success of palate-less dentures. Dentists perform fit assessments and make necessary adjustments to optimize comfort and stability. These adjustments may involve minor modifications to the denture base or prosthetic framework.

Step 5: Getting used to a palateless denture

The palate in a conventional upper denture helps to provide stability for the appliance by increasing the denture-bearing surface area. Without this suction, your horseshoe (palateless) denture will be held in place by other soft tissues in your mouth, including the cheeks, lips, and tongue. This may take some time to get used to, but your false teeth will eventually feel more comfortable and functional, without the plastic material covering the roof of the mouth.

Step 6: Enhancing retention of palateless dentures

Ideally, a palateless denture is supported by implants for stability. You can discuss with your dentist about getting implants or mini-implants to support your horseshoe denture. But to avoid the cost and lengthy process of getting dental implants, your dentist may recommend adding clasps or denture liners (such as soft liners or all-acrylic liners) to enhance retention and provide added comfort. You might also need to rely on denture adhesive.


This process requires specialized equipment and a high level of expertise and knowledge in dental prosthetics. Dentists and dental technicians with experience in denture fabrication and modification are best equipped to carry out this procedure effectively.

Benefits of Palate-less Dentures

Improved speech and taste sensation

One of the significant advantages of palate-less dentures is the enhancement of speech. With the removal of the palate, wearers can better articulate sounds, leading to clearer and more natural speech. Additionally, the absence of the palate allows for improved taste sensation, as the taste buds on the palate are no longer covered.

Enhanced comfort and reduced gag reflex

Many individuals experience discomfort and a gag reflex when wearing traditional dentures that cover the palate. Palate-less dentures eliminate this issue, providing a more comfortable fit and reducing the likelihood of triggering the gag reflex. This increased comfort allows individuals to wear their dentures with ease and confidence.

Natural and aesthetic appearance

Palate-less dentures offer a more natural and aesthetic appearance compared to traditional dentures. Without the visible presence of the palate, these dentures blend seamlessly with the natural tissues of the mouth, giving a more lifelike appearance. This aesthetic enhancement can boost self-esteem and improve the overall satisfaction of denture wearers.

Pros and cons of removing the palate from your denture



More comfortable than traditional dentures


Enhances your taste and food enjoyment

Easily dislodged

Beneficial for patients who have sensitive gag reflex

Must use adhesive and other methods to enhance denture retention

Cost effective

Prone to damage without the palate to offer support

Final Thoughts

Maintaining good oral hygiene is essential for the longevity and performance of palate-less dentures. Wearers should follow a daily cleaning and care routine, which includes brushing the denture, rinsing with mouthwash, and soaking it in a denture cleanser. Regular dental check-ups and professional cleaning are also necessary to monitor oral health and address any issues promptly.


  • Editorial team

    A team comprising oral health care professionals, researchers, and professional Writers, striving to impart you with the knowledge to improve your oral health, and that of your loved ones. 

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