Tips for Better Denture Wear and Care
Dentures can improve your smile and overall quality of life, but they are an investment.
Costs vary by person and region, but a complete set averages $1,300, according to
Health care Blue Book. While dental insurance may help with
the expense, you don’t want to find yourself replacing them too often.
Additionally, poor denture care can result in an uncomfortable fit, as well as painful
and expensive oral health problems.
Follow these basic tips to keep your denture-wearing experience positive:
- Clean them properly
Remove and clean your dentures daily to remove debris, keep your breath clean, and
prevent staining. The American
Dental Association reminds denture wearers to never use powdered household
cleansers or bleach, and the
American College of Prosthodontists states that the chemicals and materials
in toothpaste can also harm dentures. Instead, use a denture cleaner, mild handsoap
or dishwashing liquid, along with warm water and a soft toothbrush. It is also recommended
that you rinse your dentures with water after meals.
- Don’t let them dry out
When you are not wearing your dentures, make sure you keep them moist. Dentures
can dry out and lose their shape, which means they will not fit well. Soak them
in a denture cleaning solution or water—but never hot water, which will cause warping.
Dentures should be removed nightly to give your gums and jaw a break from the pressure.
- Leave adjustments to the professionals
It may be tempting to troubleshoot or ignore problems with denture fit. You may
end up doing more harm than good, which can result in even more costly repairs or
replacements. Ill-fitting dentures can result in mouth sores and infections, as
well as difficulty eating.
If you break or damage your dentures, or they become uncomfortable, schedule an
appointment with your dentist or prosthodontist right away. He or she can help you
safely address any issues.
- Handle with care
When removing your dentures, exercise caution. Dropping them may result in damage
OralB reminds denture wearers to fill the sink with water or place a folded
towel in it when handling them for cleaning or removal.
- Continue caring for your mouth
Just because you wear dentures doesn’t mean you don’t need to practice oral hygiene.
You still run the risk of gum disease and other oral health problems, even if you
have no remaining natural teeth. Gently brush your gums, twice daily, and visit
the dentist every six months for a checkup. If you have natural teeth remaining,
be sure to floss between them daily.
Discuss denture care with your dentist to ensure the optimal procedure for your
situation. When properly maintained, your dentures can last several years.