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Frequently Asked Questions

Our answers to some common inquiries.

What do I need to know about dentures if i’m getting new ones or have had them for a long time?

What are dentures?

Many people around you wear dentures, and most of the time you would never know. They are artificial teeth that can be easily removed and replaced by the wearer. They are the most cost effective way to replace your missing teeth.

Will I notice them?

Dentures can take 2-6 months to get used to. You are probably used to limited chewing surface or no teeth at all, and having new dentures your mouth will feel abnormally full. You will sound funny when you talk, eating and drinking will be foreign. Eventually you will get used to them. The fit of them may change over the years and you may need to have them relined (adjustment of the surface that contours to create a better fit). Keep in mind as well if you opted for the immediate dentures (teeth out and denture in same day), for the first month your dentures are more of a bandaid, and an aesthetic accessory than a functional denture. Once healing has occurred make sure you come in for your soft relines.

Here are some things that will help you get used to wearing your dentures:

  • Drink lots of water
  • Massage your gums
  • Use adhesives for better fit, usually where the anatomy of the bone structure is not conducive to a stable denture base.

Eating

You may bite your cheek and tongue for the first while with new dentures. Chewing tough or fibrous foods such as steak or lettuce, may be difficult to chew. Chewing slowly and avoiding tough foods is a good idea. Steaming your vegetables will help also.

Your Dentures are more fragile than your natural teeth. Opening bottles, cracking nuts, etc. will damage your dentures.

Speaking

Reading out loud to yourself or videotaping yourself speaking, will help you figure out how your dentures work into your scheme of speech. You can ask someone to listen to you to help you hear the differences that subtle changes in your functioning make. But keep in mind you will most likely notice the change in your speech more than anyone else.

Cleaning

  • Wear your glasses/contacts while cleaning so you can see the areas that need to be cleaned.
  • Fill the sink with a towel or water so that if you drop the denture the porcelain does not cause anything to be broken.
  • Brush your denture. It is not necessary and can even be harmful to the denture to use toothpaste. Toothpaste is very abrasive. Don’t hold your denture by the back teeth on both sides at the same time as this pinching motion will break the denture. Always hold the denture by one side.
  • Brush your gums and existing teeth. It is very important to maintain the health of the gums and save any teeth that are left.
  • Clean your dentures every day and rinse them with water after every meal.
  • Soak your denture overnight in water or denture cleaner. It will help kill bacteria that live in the acrylic, and it is good to give your tissues a rest. Check any cleaner you use to make sure that it is safe for your denture. Some cleaners may damage metal dentures. If your dentures are out of the mouth make sure that they are soaking in water, so that they don’t dry out.

Sleeping

Some recent research points to a link between sleeping without your dentures and sleep apnea. This is because the airway collapses without the dentures to hold it in it’s natural position. If you find sleeping without your dentures causes you to have restless and/or uncomfortable sleep or you are tired all the time, fall asleep anywhere even sometimes while driving. You may struggle with sleep apnea and it would be a good idea to sleep with you dentures in, but make sure you find some other time during the day to give your tissues a break for at least 3-4 hours a day.

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