Frequently Asked Questions
The expected lifespan of a denture is generally accepted as 5-7 years, after which new dentures are recommended. Permanent Relines will most likely be required every 2-3 years during this timeframe, to refit the dentures to your changing gums. Wearing the same dentures for longer than this time frame, is not recommended. Just as new eyeglass prescriptions are needed to accommodate changing eyesight, dentures need to be renewed to replace worn teeth and refit to accommodate shrinking gum tissue and jaw bones (ridges). Medical conditions or medications can affect the speed in which this happens.
Changes to dentures and biting position, and bone loss happen so gradually they go unnoticed over time. As a result, patients sometimes go too long between new dentures or checkups. This can result in sore spots, loose dentures, an over-closed biting position, or an excess growth of flabby tissue on the lower ridge. The denture itself becomes stained and absorbs bacteria and the teeth become dull decreasing chewing ability. It’s recommended to visit a Denturist annually to check the health of the gums, and the fit, function, and condition of the dentures.
A denture is a foreign object that places pressure on the tissues of the mouth. Leaving dentures out overnight allows for normal circulation to return to the mouth and gums, and will also prevent grinding or clenching. We recommend soaking the denture in a denture cleaner to aid in cleaning off plaque and bacteria. If leaving the denture out overnight is not possible due to medical reasons or personal preference, the mouth and gums should be brushed with a very soft toothbrush or at least rubbed with a finger at least once a day to stimulate blood flow and circulation. Even soaking dentures while showering is beneficial to both the mouth and dentures.
It’s important to have an annual exam of the mouth with or without natural teeth. This exam determines abnormal or excessive tissue growth, damage or inflammation (due to shrinking bone and tissues), oral cancer or other medical conditions, fit of the denture, correct biting position, and overall condition of the mouth and dentures. Catching small problems in advance can allow preventative steps before more severe conditions develop.
- To keep the mouth and gums healthy, brush or massage the gums, tongue and palate 1-2 times a day with a soft denture brush or clean finger, and leave dentures out overnight.
Brush dentures after every meal or at least 1-2 times a day using a soft, quality denture brush and denture cleaning solution. Do not use regular toothpaste as it is abrasive and can scratch the dentures, leaving places for plaque and bacteria to build up. Plaque then hardens into calculus resulting in staining, bacterial problems, or denture odours. We carry NU-DENT®, a commercial strength denture cleaner. For larger build ups, we can also clean dentures in our ultrasonic cleaner.
Tips for cleaning:
- To avoid or minimize breakage, always clean dentures over a towel or partially filled sink.
- Use lukewarm water to remove loose food particles. Hot water may warp the denture.
- Support the denture evenly without squeezing the sides or ends together, apply cleaner and brush lightly and thoroughly.
- Rinse dentures well to remove all traces of cleaning products.
- Use a clean finger or soft toothbrush to massage or brush gums, tongue, and palate lightly. Stimulating blood flow promotes healthy tissue.
- Insert dentures. Soak dentures overnight in cleaner, then rinse in the morning before wearing.
Dentures are custom made to fit each person’s mouth accurately and should not require the use of an adhesive. However, there are applications for adhesive use, especially as temporary solutions. These include emergency situations when unable to access professional help, special occasions to provide extra security or peace of mind, or for many people that have excessive bone loss that prefer to use adhesives every day. Preventative hygiene is very important in these cases to prevent additional problems.
Using adhesives in order to delay relines or replacement is not advised.
If the underlying cause of loose dentures, constant irritations or sore spots is not addressed, it could affect a patient’s gum, tissues and overall health. Loose dentures can contribute to bone loss if not dealt with in a timely manner. Implant Dentures provide a permanent solution to loose dentures.
Overnight: clean dentures thoroughly and place in lukewarm cleaning solution to prevent them from drying out and inhibiting bacterial growth.
Long term storage of previous sets: clean dentures thoroughly, dry them off and placing them in a denture case. Dentures should be soaked for 24 hours prior to reuse.
No. Dentures are made from individual impressions. Each denture is hand crafted and custom made and will not work for anyone else. This is also why dentures cannot be bought or made as a “quick” temporary disposable set. There are no short cuts: impressions are taken, the bite is determined and dentures are made all using excellent quality materials and workmanship. As technology refines Digital Dentures, a “temporary” or “duplicate” option should become available in the near future.
The best and most advanced denture acrylic and teeth on the market can still break or chip if dropped even from a small height onto a hard surface. “Impact resistant” is totally dependent on the type of impact, how hard and where it occurs; very similar to “water resistant” marketing. We treat repairs as emergencies and most can be done on the same day with minimum wait. There are features that can be added to a denture to make it stronger, however the acrylic and teeth are still brittle and can break or chip if dropped, or if chewed by pets. Strides are being made in the industry to create more durable and less breakable options and materials.
Crazy glue may work temporarily in emergency situations. Some concerns are that materials or chemicals not designed for the mouth can seep into the body, the integrity of the denture may be compromised depending on the extensiveness of the break, but MOST importantly, if the denture broke while being used, WHY did it break? If the reason is not obvious, it needs to be determined and corrected otherwise the same break may continue to occur. To repair dentures professionally, old acrylic is ground out around the break and new acrylic is used to chemically bond with existing acrylic resulting in a stronger, safer repair than using glue.
No. Irreparable damage can be done to the denture using the wrong tools or adjusting in the wrong spot. This in turn can either cause a much worse fitting denture or cost more for additional repairs.
Answer not found?
If you haven’t found an answer to your question, your situation may be more specific and require an individual consultation. Please feel free to call our office to set up a no obligation, no pressure, FREE consultation at your convenience. We would love to have the opportunity to help you.