Dentures can improve your speaking, allow you to eat a wider variety of foods, and boost your confidence, but there are some problems you should keep an eye out for.
According to the American Dental Association, 36 million Americans don’t have any teeth — and nearly a hundred million more are missing at least one tooth. Luckily, dentures can fill gaps and give people back their beautiful smiles.
However, while dentures have plenty to offer those missing teeth, they aren’t without their problems. But before we dive into common denture problems, let’s quickly go over the basics of dentures.
A quick overview of dentures
Missing teeth can result from injury, tooth decay, or gum disease. Either way, it’ll make speaking and chewing challenging, but there’s an effective solution: dentures!
Since these removable appliances replace missing teeth, they can make speaking and chewing much easier. With dentures, you’ll sound clearer and can eat plenty of foods without problems. Plus, dentures will provide your alveolar bone with much-needed stimulation, which can fend off facial collapse and sagging skin. They can even help fill out your face like your natural teeth did, preventing significant appearance changes and boosting self-confidence.
Common types of dentures you may run across include:
- Full (permanent) dentures: Full dentures fit over the gums and can replace all teeth. Patients will need to wait 8-12 weeks after extraction to let the impacted tissues heal before full dentures can be fitted.
- Immediate (temporary) dentures: Immediate dentures provide you with a temporary set of teeth as you wait to receive your permanent dentures.
- Snap-in dentures: These removable dentures can attach to implant posts, resulting in increased stability and comfort.
- Partial dentures: Those missing only a few teeth can use removable or implant-supported partial dentures. Partial dentures can also prevent the surrounding teeth from shifting.
Common denture problems
Dentures have plenty to offer, but things may not be perfect from the get-go. Some common denture problems you may experience include:
1. Trouble eating
When you first get dentures, eating may be more difficult than you remember. After all, you’ll have something completely new in your mouth! Plus, dentures are less stable than natural teeth and may fall out of position when eating.
Fortunately, with time and some practice, you’ll soon get used to eating with dentures.
2. Difficulty speaking
Similarly, speaking may become more difficult after getting dentures. There won’t be much gum or bone beneath your dentures to prevent movement, and you’ll need to get used to having a new foreign object in your mouth.
Practice speaking with your dentures by reading your favorite book out loud, talking to yourself, singing along with the radio, or speaking with a close friend. As long as you ensure your dentures are in the proper position before you start, you’ll get used to speaking with dentures before you know it!
Dentures are prone to slipping out of position when eating, speaking, smiling, laughing, and coughing. Eventually, you’ll be able to hold your dentures in place using your tongue and cheek muscles. You can also consult your dentist about using adhesive creams, strips, liquids, powders, or pads to keep your dentures in place.
4. Cleaning problems
Just because dentures aren’t real teeth doesn’t mean you can abandon your oral hygiene routine! Rinse and brush your dentures nightly to remove plaque and food particles and prevent staining. You should also brush your tongue, gums, and the roof of your mouth before putting in your dentures to promote circulation and remove plaque.
5. Bad breath
Many denture newbies experience bad breath, especially if the appliances aren’t cleaned properly. Bacteria and food particles can become caught in dentures’ crevices, quickly multiplying and emitting a terrible smell.
To make things worse, dry mouth (a common cause of bad breath) and dentures sometimes go hand in hand. While dentures don’t cause dry mouth, wearers may have difficulty drinking, which can lead to dry mouth.
Caring for your dentures
As mentioned earlier, just because dentures aren’t your natural teeth doesn’t mean you can ignore them and hope for the best. If you don’t take care of your dentures, you may experience health complications down the line, such as inflammation, ulcers, and thrush. You may even have to replace your dentures much earlier than anticipated!
When it comes to proper denture care, you’ll want to:
- Be careful with your dentures: Dropping your dentures can cause damage, so lay a towel at the bottom of your sink as a cushion or fill the sink with water.
- Brush your dentures daily: Just as with natural teeth, you’ll need to brush your dentures daily. Use non-abrasive toothpaste and a soft-bristle brush.
- Rinse your dentures: Rinsing your dentures after every meal will remove some food particles and hold you over until it’s time for the next brushing.
- Use a denture cleaner: You should also soak your dentures in a cleaning solution at the end of each day. Not sure where to start? Look for products with the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance!
Espire Dental can handle all your denture needs
Schedule an appointment at Espire’s La Mesa, California, location today! Our highly trained dentists can fit you for dentures and quickly resolve problems. Don’t live near our La Mesa office? Find one of our other locations near you.
La Mesa, CA
8555 Fletcher Pkwy
La Mesa, CA 91942