Tips on Denture Care
Millions of people wear dentures, from young adults to the elderly. Though it is possible to keep your natural teeth your entire life, life sometimes has other plans for people and teeth are lost. Living with dentures is sometimes a daunting prospect for people who find out they are going to need them, but wearing them can be surprisingly easy after a short adjustment period. When we see patients at Alabama Family Dentistry go from missing teeth to dentures, we know they value their new teeth and want to take good care of them. We can help with tips on cleaning and care.
Full and partial dentures need to be cleaned daily. You should never use regular toothpaste to clean them. They can be soaked in denture cleanser, which you can purchase usually in the form of tablets that dissolve in water. Many people think that soaking nightly in this solution is enough, but it is very important to brush each denture to remove food particles and plaque. You should always brush them while they are wet, and you can use liquid soap, special toothpaste made for dentures or dishwashing liquid. You can brush with a regular toothbrush or a special denture brush. This type of brush usually has a two-sided head, with a normal brush like a toothbrush on one side and a smaller brush on the other side. Some denture brushes also have a rubber pick to further help to remove debris.
Soaking in cleansing solution after brushing can help to remove bacteria. Some denture cleansers claim to need only three minutes of soaking, while others are designed for soaking overnight or about eight hours. You should talk to your dentist about how long you should wear your dentures daily and how long they should remain out of your mouth. If you purchase three-minute cleanser, it is usually perfectly safe to leave your dentures soaking in it longer.
A denture should never be allowed to dry out. If you are ever in a situation where they need to be out of your mouth and you have no denture cleanser available, you can put them in water. Avoid using hot water for soaking or cleaning your dentures, as it may warp them and affect the way they fit. Lukewarm water is generally sufficient for dissolving cleansing tablets and brushing.
Always remember that a denture can break, so handle with care. Be careful when cleaning each denture at the sink and put down a towel or soft pad in case you drop one. Also, you should always wash your hands before handling your dentures to keep bacteria from being transmitted to them.
If you would like to learn more or have any questions, you can call Alabama Family Dentistry. We have offices to serve you in four locations in the Birmingham area.