Posts for tag: Dentures
Today’s technologically advanced dentures aren’t your grandparents’ “false teeth.” Now made with superior materials and processes, you could almost forget you’re wearing them. But don’t let that cause you to leave them in for the night: While it may seem like a harmless thing to do, wearing dentures 24/7 may not be good for them or your health.
For one thing, around the clock denture wearing could worsen bone loss, already a concern with dentures and missing teeth. The forces generated when we chew on natural teeth stimulate new bone growth to replace older bone cells. When teeth go missing, though, so does this stimulus. Even the best dentures can’t restore this stimulation, so bone loss remains a risk.
And, dentures can accelerate bone loss because of the added pressure they bring to the bony gum ridges that support them. Wearing them all the time deprives the gums of any rest, further speeding up the pace of bone loss. Losing bone volume not only affects your overall oral health, it will gradually loosen your dentures’ fit and make them uncomfortable to wear.
Another problem: You may clean your dentures less frequently if you don’t take them out at night. Lack of cleaning can encourage bacterial growth and lead to disease. Studies show that people who don’t take their dentures out at night have more dental plaque accumulation, gum inflammation and higher blood counts of the protein interleukin 6, indicating the body is fighting infection.
And that’s not just a problem for your mouth. Continuous denture wearing could make you twice as likely to develop life-threatening pneumonia as someone who routinely takes their dentures out.
These and other concerns make nightly denture removal a good practice for your health’s sake. While they’re out, it’s also a good time to clean them: Manually brush them for best results (be sure you’re only using regular soap or denture cleanser—toothpaste is too abrasive for them). You can then store them in clean water or a solution designed for dentures.
Having said all that, though, there may be one reason why wearing dentures at night might be beneficial—it may help prevent obstructive sleep apnea. If you have this condition, talk to your dentist about whether wearing your dentures at night has more advantages than disadvantages. And, if bone loss created by wearing dentures is a concern, it could be resolved by having implants support your dentures. Again, discuss this with your dentist.
Taking care of your dentures will help increase their life and fit, and protect your health. And part of that may be taking them out to give your gums a rest while you’re resting.
If you would like more information on denture care, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Sleeping in Dentures.”
It’s a common problem for denture wearers: after years of a comfortable fit, your dentures now seem to be uncomfortably loose. The reason, though, may have more to do with bone loss than the dentures.
Bone is a living tissue with a life cycle — it forms, it ages, and it eventually dies and dissolves (resorbs). It’s replaced with new bone and the cycle repeats. Additionally, the forces generated when we bite or chew are transmitted from the teeth to the jaw, which helps stimulate new bone growth. When the natural teeth are missing, however, the bone no longer receives this stimulus. Resorbed bone isn’t replaced at a healthy rate, which leads over time to bone loss.
Denture construction can also contribute to bone loss. The denture palate rests for support on the bony ridges that once held the teeth. Over time the compressive forces of the dentures apply damages and reduces the volume of gum tissue and eventually does the same to the bone. Combining all these factors, the reduced gum and bone volume will eventually alter the denture fit.
There are a few alternatives for correcting loose dentures. One is to reline them with new plastic, as either a temporary fix performed during an office visit or a more permanent relining that requires sending your dentures to a dental lab. Depending on the rate of bone loss, a patient could go through several denture relinings to accommodate ongoing changes in the jaw. At some point, though, it may be necessary to create a new set of dentures.
A third alternative that’s becoming increasingly useful is to incorporate dental implants into the denture design. Implants can of course be used to replace individual teeth, but a few strategically placed implants (usually of smaller dimension) can serve as a support platform for a removable denture. This relieves some of the compression force of a traditionally worn denture and can slow bone loss.
If you’re having problems with your denture fit, call us for an appointment. We’ll help you decide on the best alternative to improving the fit and making your dentures more comfortable and secure.
If you would like more information on refitting loose dentures, please contact us today to schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Loose Dentures.”
Discover the best way to handle your dentures to promote a healthier smile.
Now that you’ve finally gotten your new dentures from your Lincolnwood dentist Dr. Robert Silvers, DMD, you want to know exactly how to care for your new smile. If you want your dentures to last you, follow these helpful at-home oral care tips.
Handle carefully: Even though dentures can hold up against some of the powerful chewing forces your jaws can dish out, this oral appliance isn’t invisible. The clasps or plastic attachments can be bent or damaged if handled improperly or too harshly. We also recommend handling your dentures over a towel, so if you drop them they are less likely to incur damage.
Clean daily: Just as you would with natural teeth, you want to also make sure your dentures stay clean. Use a denture cleanser to help remove food and other debris from your smile. Always remember, however, to never brush your dentures while they are still inside your mouth.
Brush your mouth: Teeth aren’t the only spaces where food and debris can linger. That’s why it’s important to use a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean your tongue and cheeks. Be sure to do this anytime after you remove your dentures.
Soak dentures: Dentures should never be allowed to dry out; otherwise they will lose their shape. Therefore, always place your dentures in a denture-soaking product overnight. If you have questions about the kind of denture solution to use, talk to your Lincolnwood dentist Dr. Silvers about how to properly store your dentures overnight.
See your Lincolnwood dentist: When you come in for your denture fitting we will also talk to you about how often you need to come in for a dental cleaning and exam. Usually, this is every six months; however, depending on your oral health, we may recommend that you come in more often. If you start to notice slippage, sore spots or loose dentures, then it’s also time to make an appointment.
Whether it’s time for your six-month dental cleaning or you just have a question about caring for your dentures, your Lincolnwood dentist is here to help. Contact Dr. Silvers at The Cosmetic and Implant Dental Center in Lincolnwood anytime at (847) 675-7010. We are here for you and your smile.