If you’ve recently been fitted with dentures, you may be thinking that you don’t have to take care of them as much as your natural teeth. The truth is, it’s important to maintain great oral care practices as you transition into having them. With great oral care, your dentures can last for several years, but you must maintain them. Here’s a list of the common mistakes that denture wearers often make and how to avoid them:
- Denture wearers stop brushing. Dental hygiene is extremely important when you have dentures. You should continue to brush your tongue, gums and remaining teeth at least twice a day. Doing so will keep your mouth healthy and minimize irritation from wearing your dentures.
- Denture wearers brush dentures hard. Cleaning your dentures is very important, and you should brush them as often as you brush your normal teeth. It’s important to be gentle, though. Dentures are softer than natural teeth, and brushing them too hard can scratch them. When cleaning them, use a soft-bristled toothbrush and an non-abrasive cleaner. If you use denture adhesives, brushing the adhesive off with soap and water should remove it.
- Dentures fall or dry out. Since dentures are more delicate than natural teeth, dropping them on the floor can crack them. When you’re cleaning your dentures, do so over a sink filled with water or over a folded towel. After you’re done cleaning them for the night, immerse them in water inside a clean and safe container. Dentures left out can dry out and begin to warp. Your dentist can also talk to you about cleaning solutions that you can use.
- Dentures get Stained. Just like natural teeth, dentures can stain as a result of eating and drinking foods that can stain, such as red wine, coffee and tea. It’s also important not to smoke or chew tobacco. If your dentures do get stained, do not try to bleach them, as the bleach can weaken the dentures. Your dentist can tell you about the appropriate ways to remove stains.
- Denture wearers stop seeing the dentist. In order to keep your mouth healthy, it’s important to keep seeing your dentist regularly. After being fitted for dentures, they may need adjustments or be refit or replaced.
With great oral care habits, including seeing the dentist regularly, your dentures can look and fit great for a very long time. If you’re due for a checkup, or are having issues with your dentures, make an appointment