Dentures: The Problems and Their Solutions

Following are several common issues faced by denture wearers and a number of things you can do to resolve pain, movement, discoloration and bad breath.

Pain and mouth infection: Pain is a common experience for denture wearers and that discomfort can have a number of different sources. Patients who are new to dentures will likely develop a few sore spots during the first 24 hours and sometimes simply waiting to adjust to the new prosthesis resolves this pain. Continuing pain and new pain can be caused by poor fit, development of canker sores, injury to the joints that connect the lower jaw to your skull, pressure on nerves between your jaw and skull, an overgrowth of tissue beneath dentures, and yeast infections, cheilitis and stomatitis. We first recommend a thorough cleaning of your mouth and dentures and use of a topical oral pain-relieving ointment on your gums. If pain persists, make an appointment with Carmel West Dentistry and Dr. Halsema can diagnose and treat the source of your pain. Regular dental visits allow denture wearers to prevent problems and quickly address existing issues.

Denture movement: Changes to your mouth and to your dentures over time can lead to a loosening and shifting of the dentures. Your bones can shrink daily wear on dentures changes the shape of the prosthesis. Excess movement can result in irritation and sores in the mouth or on the gums, changes in your facial features, and lessen your ability to chew your food well. Schedule a visit to Carmel West Dentistry when your dentures don’t fit snugly. Dr. Halsema has special tools made specifically for repairing dentures. As do-it-yourself repair kits may harm your dentures and glues may contain chemicals that are harmful, we advise that you never attempt to adjust or repair your dentures. Denture relining can correct movement and after five to seven years we recommend relining or replacement.

Stained dentures: Just like healthy teeth, you should brush your dentures daily to prevent accumulation of food and plaque. Soak your dentures in an ADA approved soaking solution or water at night and during the day when you are not wearing your dentures. In addition to cleaning, soaking keeps dentures moist and maintains the shape of the prosthesis. Never soak dentures in hot water as this can cause disfiguration. Daily cleaning in ultrasonic cleaners is another way to prevent staining employing high frequency sound waves. If stains persist after using ADA approved denture cleansing creams, pastes, gels and solutions, try washing with mild dish soap. The Carmel West Dentistry team may be able to help remove or fade stubborn stains. Dr. Halsema advises against using other household cleaners like alcohol, bathroom and sink cleaners, bleaches, whiteners that may damage your dentures or blanch the pink areas of your prosthesis.

Bad Breath: A regular mouth and denture-cleaning regimen is the best defense against bad breath, the accumulation of bacteria also known as halitosis. Bacteria, plaque, and even mold can build up in your mouth and on your dentures. Remember to rinse food particles from your dentures after mealtimes and brush your dentures and gums once a day with a toothbrush. Do not wear your dentures at night and soak the prosthesis in water or denture cleansing solution when removed. Use an over-the-counter antiseptic mouthwash or a prescribed antibacterial mouthrinse to fight general mouth bacteria. White or yellow deposits lodged in tonsils may also cause bad breath and may require more advanced medical attention. Visit Carmel West Dentistry to have your dentures and mouth professionally checked and cleaned.

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