Complete and Partial Denture Care
Following the delivery of new dentures, there is a variable period of time (generally two to six weeks) of adjustment.
New dentures often feel bulky and awkward at first. Soft tissues of the mouth are now covered that may have been open or left uncovered by a previous denture. This strangeness, although bothersome, is a temporary problem that is usually resolved during the adjustment period.
The ability to function with complete dentures involves learned neuromuscular skills that take time to develop. Although the time required may vary and depend upon such factors as the quality of the remaining ridges, all new denture wearers will require this adjustment period.
The new artificial teeth may be placed in slightly different relationships and the plastic denture base may feel bulky. speech patterns are often temporarily interrupted. The muscles of the tongue, lips, and cheek must learn to coordinate movement to allow for normal speech. The learning process can be enhanced by practice. Reading aloud is one way to minimize the time required to recover normal speech patterns. Continued difficulty should be brought to our attention.
A normal response of the body to new dentures is increased salivary flow.
Again, it will take practice to learn to eat a fairly normal diet with new dentures. During the first several days, we recommend a soft diet to allow us to eliminate potential sore spots with minimum discomfort and to make the learning period more tolerable. Avoid tough, hard, and sticky foods until you become more experienced. Although some experienced denture patients can eat a normal diet, including apples, salads and corn on the cob, this is probably the exception to the rule. Most denture wearers will find some restrictions in the foods they can manage.
Some Points to Remember Regarding Eating and Chewing Habits:
New dentures or recently relined dentures almost always cause some sore spots to develop. We recommend eating soft foods until the initial sore spots are eliminated. The best home treatment between appointments is to rinse with warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon to 8oz. Glass of warm water).
Wearing Dentures at Night:
There is no question that the healthiest policy is to remove dentures for at least six hours daily to allow the soft tissues to breathe and recover. For most patients, the most convenient time is at night or during sleep. While out of the mouth, they should be soaked in either water or denture cleaning solution. Such a practice will maintain much healthier oral tissues, preserve the ridges and underlying bone, and allow the denture to fit properly.
Any of the commercial denture cleaners can be used. You may purchase one of the best denture cleaners on the market at our office. Dentures should be thoroughly cleaned daily with a denture brush, soft bristle tooth brush or cleaner. It is the meticulous brushing that is most effective in removing bacterial plaque and staining. Do not use toothpaste as it is too abrasive and will scratch the denture.
Caring for the oral tissues is also important. A soft toothbrush or wash cloth should be used to scrub the tongue, gums, and roof of the mouth. Warm salt water rinses in the morning and evening are also recommended.
Do not use hot water to soak the denture in since it may result in warping. Such changes may also result from the denture being exposed to dry air for long periods.
Adjustments and Repairs:
We will provide whatever adjustments necessary for the life of the denture.
No dentures are meant to last forever. Generally, six to eight years is the average life span of a well-made prosthesis. The dentures may require a reline every two to five years to maintain an ideal fit.
Partial denture patients may follow many of the same guidelines outlined above.
Additional points include the following:
If dentures are delivered the day the teeth are removed, remember to leave the denture in place during the first 24 hours.
Please DO NOT HESITATE to call us with any questions or concerns you may have at