The Basics of Dentures
There are two different types of complete dentures: conventional and immediate. With conventional dentures, you wait for your gum tissue to fully heal after the unsavable teeth have been extracted before you are fitted for the dentures. This ensures your dentures will fit and continue to fit in the future. However, it can take months – typically eight to twelve – for your gums to heal completely.
On the other hand, immediate dentures are made before your teeth are removed and then placed immediately after the teeth are extracted. Because your gums will continue to heal and shrink, it will require more follow-ups and adjustments to the denture to ensure they continue to fit well. However, you won’t need to go any period of time without teeth, meaning your appearance and ability to chew will be much better.
Another option we might consider is partial dentures. Partial dentures are ideal when you’ve lost some teeth but still have plenty of healthy teeth in place. You can get either removable or fixed partial dentures, depending on your situation and preferences.
What It’s Like to Have Dentures
We’re often asked by people what the experience of having dentures is like. As with most prosthetics, it can take a little bit of time getting used to. If you’ve ever had a cap placed or even a filling, you’re aware of how little changes can feel so dramatic in your mouth. Obviously, with dentures, there’s a lot of change going on, which will certainly take some time to adjust to.
That said, the benefits of dentures far outweigh the initial awkwardness of them. In addition, we’re always here for our patients to make sure their dentures are fitted properly, and we’re able to make adjustments to them if any discomfort persists.
How We Fit You for Dentures
If we have decided that dentures are your best option after an examination, we’ll begin measuring your mouth and jaw and making a series of impressions. From these impressions, we will create a model of a set of dentures that you can try on. We’ll spend time with you to make sure they fit well and to make any adjustments needed.
Once we agree on the model, we’ll have it sent to our lab to cast the final denture. After we receive the dentures, you will come in for another appointment to have a final fitting of them, and we’ll likely have some follow-up appointments to make adjustments and to ensure everything is working properly.
How To Clean Dentures
After you get dentures at Auburn Hills Family Dentistry, you’ll get a full set of directions on how to clean and care for them. There are a few different steps that you’ll need to take.
First, you should remove and rinse your dentures after every meal. You should also rinse your mouth and brush your gums and remaining teeth (if you wear partial dentures) after every meal. This helps remove food debris from your dentures and your gums and teeth.
In addition to this, you should brush your dentures thoroughly once per day. You can simply use water and a brush to clean your dentures. Do not use toothpaste, since the abrasive materials in toothpaste could damage your dentures. You should also use a special, soft-bristled denture brush for the same reason. Excessively stiff toothbrushes could damage your dentures.
You also should remove your dentures at night and use a specialized denture cleaner to sanitize and clean them. Put your dentures into a container of water to keep them moist, then add some denture cleaner.
While you sleep, the denture cleaner will soak into your dentures and kill any remaining bacteria. Then, when you wake up, you can just rinse your dentures and your mouth, then put your dentures in and go about your morning routine.
Can You Sleep In Dentures?
It is possible to sleep in dentures, but it’s not a good idea. Dr. Haycock recommends that you avoid sleeping in dentures as much as possible.
There are a few reasons for this. First, soaking your dentures overnight in a denture cleaner is the best way to keep them clean, sanitized, and in good condition. If you wear them overnight, plaque and tartar are more likely to build up on your dentures.
This bacteria buildup can lead to a higher risk of issues like gum and tongue plaque, as well as gum inflammation and other related oral hygiene problems.
Another reason for this is that taking your dentures out at night gives your gums and jaw time to rest and relax. This is particularly important for full dentures. Because full dentures are held in place by friction and put a lot of pressure on your gums, it’s important to give your mouth time to rest and recover.
Failing to do so can lead to a higher risk of complications like gum sores and ulcers. The constant, unrelieved pressure of your dentures could damage your gums, leading to pain, discomfort, and bleeding.
Can You Eat Normally In Dentures?
Yes, though you will need some practice to get used to wearing your dentures properly, and you may have to adjust how you eat some foods.
This is because dentures are less stable than natural teeth. They also do not have any nerves, which means you can’t “feel” them like you can feel natural teeth. Because of this, it will take time to get used to biting and chewing food with your dentures.
Eventually, you will be able to eat normally. But you still may want to avoid some foods, like sticky candy, chewing gum, and caramel.
You also may need to take steps to make it easier to eat crunchy and tough foods. For example, cutting your steak into smaller, bite-sized pieces with a knife will make it easier to eat your meal, compared to biting and tearing chunks off of your steak with your dentures.