Dentures are removable tooth prosthetics designed to look and function like natural teeth. For thousands of years, some form of denture has been used to fill in the gaps left by missing teeth, although today’s dentures are much more advanced and easier to care for. Most dentures are composed of replacement teeth attached to plastic bases that take on the appearance of the gums. They are used to compensate for one or more missing teeth, and are available as partials and complete sets of teeth. Many dental patients elect dentures for tooth replacement if they are not candidates for dental implants or are otherwise looking for a tooth replacement option that is more budget-friendly.
Caring for Your Dentures
Your dentures are custom designed to fit your smile, but did you know that improperly caring for them can cause them to become distorted?
Clean your dentures daily with a soft denture brush and toothpaste that is specifically made for dentures. A regular toothbrush can cause damage to the dentures since these products tend to be too abrasive. Brush your denture over a sink filled with water or over a folded towel so it will not be damaged if you drop it. Rinse your denture in warm water after eating to remove food particles. It is also very important to leave your dentures out at night to keep your oral tissues healthy. This is a perfect time to soak your denture in a denture cleanser to loosen debris. Do NOT soak in bleach, bar soap or baking soda. Any time that you are not wearing your dentures be sure to keep them in water or cleanser so they do not dry out and become cracked or warped.
By following these recommendations your dentures will remain clean and free of stains, which ultimately helps your smile look its best.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if I am a candidate for removable dentures?
If you are missing one or more teeth and thinking of getting dentures in Riverside, you will need a professional consultation with Dr. Appelbaum. He will examine your teeth and gums and take x-rays to check for any dental abnormalities that can not be seen during the visual exam. Dr. Appelbaum will make a recommendation as to what tooth prosthetic options are available for you based on whether some or all of your teeth need to be replaced. During this time, you can explore your options, ask questions, and make a decision as to whether dentures are right for you.
What should I expect when being fitted for dentures?
If teeth need to be extracted Dr. Appelbaum will refer you to an oral surgeon. Once your gums have healed, impressions will be taken at our Riverside office to be sent to a dental lab where your custom dentures will be fabricated. An additional appointment will be needed to deliver your denture and make adjustments, if necessary.
Will I need to follow any special after-care instructions?
Once your dentures are ready, you can begin wearing them on a daily basis. Expect the first few weeks to be an adjustment period, during which time you will adapt to the feel of your new dentures, as well as learn how to manipulate your tongue and cheek muscles to keep them in place. You may also experience slight irritation or soreness from the initial denture wear, although this should subside after a few days or weeks. If irritations persist, additional appointments may be needed to adjust the denture to alleviate the sore spots.
Do I need to see the dentist for yearly appointments?
A yearly dental exam with Dr. Appelbaum is necessary to check the condition of your gums, the fit of your dentures, and to check for oral abnormalities such as oral cancer. As you age, your mouth naturally changes, which can affect the way the dentures fit. Keeping up with your regular appointments will help to keep your mouth healthy and prevent injury caused by ill-fitting dentures.