If you are one of the 57% of people between the age of 65 and 74 who wear dentures, or if you are thinking about getting dentures, it’s important to know a few critical steps to effective and proper denture care. New innovations in denture technology are making dentures and partial dentures more comfortable, durable and streamline than in the past. Many of the problems with dentures of the past are no longer an issue with new dentures. As baby boomers continue to age and more and more people need dentures to replace missing teeth, the importance of proper denture care will become more and more important.
In order for your dentures to fit well so you can eat with confidence and offer a genuine smile you should wear your dentures as much as possible. Consistent and continuous wear helps speed up the adjustment period and helps identify any irritation spots so modifications can be made quickly and addressed more easily.
It is important to rinse your dentures in clean cool running water after you eat. This easily forgotten step should be a priority for denture wearers. Rinse your dentures under water for 20 – 30 seconds to remove food and debris that if left behind can cause a soft tissue infection of the gums.
Even though dentures seem durable, they can be fragile if dropped on a hard surface. When cleaning your dentures, be sure to do so with a soft towel on the bathroom counter and a bath mat under your feet. Do not soak your dentures in hot water. Hot water can cause your dentures to melt, warp and change shape. Unfortunately even small changes in the shape of your dentures can cause irritations and fit problems.
Dentures should only be cleaned with specific denture cleaning agents and cleaning instruments. A toothbrush is often times too abrasive for dentures and can cause damage. Caring for your dentures is just like caring for your teeth, you should do it two times a day. Using a special denture cleaning solution throughout the week is also recommended. Your dentist may recommend using non abrasive toothpaste, be sure to only use what they recommend. Always store your dentures in water and completely submerge the dentures. Dentures that are stored dry can warp and change shape causing issues with the way the dentures fit.
It is always important to remember to take good care of your gums and tongue whether you have dentures or not. Brushing your gums and tongue daily helps stimulate the tissue and remove plaque. If you are a denture wearer, remove the dentures at night to give your gums a break. With proper care, your dentures can be an effective, comfortable and natural tooth replacement option.