By Top Raleigh Dentist Thomas E Cooke DDS
A denture is a removable replacement of missing teeth that provides the patient with aid in chewing , support of the face, and speech. There are many levels or grades of plastic that are used in making dentures and the quality of the denture is reflected by this. Denture teeth are made mainly with high grade plastic in the present time. Years ago denture teeth were made of porcelain which was thought to give a natural appearance and have superior strength. Currently, strong natural looking denture teeth can be made with high grade plastic and porcelain teeth are not currently use anymore by most dentists.
• New dentures and adhesive help
Denture adhesives are very helpful for some people and can be harmful to others. Denture adhesives can help the new denture wearer be more confident with their denture by increasing the retention in the fit but this may not be worth the hassle of the time consuming process of cleaning the adhesive out of the denture every night. If a denture does not fit correctly and the patient tries to use an adhesive to compensate for this, the denture could create tissue problems that may require surgery to correct. Powder adhesives may be easier to use than pastes and may be best for the patient that needs a small amount of help with their fit. Paste adhesives help denture patients with the more severe needs. Paste adhesives are much harder to clean off and don’t work as long on the lower denture compared to the upper denture.
• Denture experience in your first month
When you first start wearing a new set of dentures it is very important to pay attention to sore spots in the first 24 to 48 hours. Some people try to tough this out and wait and wish the discomfort away. This may invite a large sore area under the new denture. It is important to see your dentist soon after you feel these sore spots. A sore spot adjustment by your dentist should take less than 5 minutes to correct. You may need to focus on eating a soft diet for the first couple of days to allow for the denture to settle in and to allow for the facial muscles to adapt to this new situation. Your salivary glands have a tendency to over react and an increase in saliva is possible during the first couple of weeks. Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water can toughen up your gums. This can make the dentures feel more comfortable. Adhesives may be needed and between 2 weeks and four weeks of wearing a new denture. Adhesives can be experimented with to aid in keeping the denture still.
• Dentures and adjustments
Adjustments could be needed at any time during the life of a denture but they are mostly needed during the first week of a new denture. If you are getting teeth removed and having a denture placed the same day, you may need more adjustments as your gums shrink and heal. If you experience a major shift in weight, then you may have the need for an adjustment. It is common for a denture to feel loose when someone looses weight.
• Denture exams and yearly cancer exams
It is very important to have your mouth checked for oral cancer yearly. Your dentist could do this and also look to make sure that your denture is fitting correctly. A denture can experience a fit change due to jaw bone shrinkage, soft tissue changes, or weight loss/ weight gain. Many dentures can last from 5 to 10 years or more. A dentist could find an early sign of cancer in the mouth by checking your denture.
• Eating and speaking with dentures
After receiving a good fitting denture, the denture patient should be able to eat normally once again but may still have trouble with certain foods. The difficulty with eating corn on the cob and apples could be considered normal. Not all denture wearers can eat everything that they would like, but they should certainly be able to chew better with their new dentures to help them with proper digestion. A denture patient needs to use his or her lips cheek and tongue muscles to control the denture to allow for proper speaking. A proper fitting denture will allow for the denture patient to speak clearly when all their needed speaking muscles get toned up properly. This can occur by simple reading out load with your new denture in place and watching your mouth movements in a mirror. This can be practiced daily for a few days and proper speech will be achieved.