How To Clean Your Dentures

Losing your teeth can be frustrating but thanks to an advancement in dentistry you can use dentures to maintain your great smile and boost your self-confidence. However, cleaning dentures is a daunting task especially if you have never used them before. To keep dentures clean, white and bacteria free, you have to clean them thoroughly and on a regular basis. You should also clean your natural teeth and your mouth before putting on the dentures. He are a few tips that will come in handy to help you care for your dentures.

Take your dentures out for six to eight hours daily.

Your mouth tissue needs to recover after wearing your dentures for more than 12 hours. Ensure you soak the them in warm water if they have metal clasps. If they have no metal clasps then you can store them either in a solution of vinegar or a special denture cleanser. Soaking dentures helps in removing stains and bacteria.

Always handle dentures carefully to avoid damaging them.

Long lasting and high-quality dentures are not cheap. Clean your dentures carefully and avoid using toothpicks when your dentures are on. Also ensure that your dentures are kept away from kids and pets.

Cleaning dentures thoroughly on a daily basis.

To maintain their white color and stay bacteria free, cleaning dentures must be done on a regular basis. Here is a great regular oral routine that every denture wearer can try out:

· Take out your dentures after every meal and rinse them thoroughly with a lot of clean water

· Cleaning dentures thoroughly at least once a day. Use a tooth brush that has soft bristles, liquid soap, denture-cleaner or antibacterial soap. If you want to use toothpaste, seek your dentist’s opinion or alternatively follow the instructions of the manufacturer.

· Store your dentures by soaking them either in clean water or alkaline peroxide. Follow the instructions of the manufacturer to the tee to ensure you don’t soak your dentures in a solution that can damage them.

· Gently but thoroughly brush your tongue, your gums and your cheeks using a brush with soft bristles, this wil remove any food debris or remnant denture adhesive.

· Rinse your dentures thoroughly before putting them back in your mouth especially if you soak them in denture-soaking solution. This is because these solutions contain harmful chemicals that can cause unpleasant side effects such as vomiting, nausea and burns if swallowed in high concentration.

Whether you are using partial or complete dentures, it is extremely necessary that you visit your dentist often for advice and a check up. On your dental visits, your oral tissues will be examined and any issues will be treated promptly. Additionally, your dentist will also advise you on cleaning dentures.

Don’t use abrasive cleaning materials.

Cleaning dentures should be done using gentle materials to avoid permanently damaging them. Therefore, avoid using stiff-bristled brushes, cleaners that are too strong and harsh tooth paste. Seek advice from your dentist to know which cleaning materials are safe to use for cleaning your dentures.

Contact your dentist immediately you notice any issue with your dentures

Seek the advice of your dentist if your dentures start loosening or when your gums feel sore or irritated. Loose dentures can be extremely uncomfortable and can also cause painful sores and irritation of the gums.

Tips that will come in handy in helping you eat while wearing dentures.

Chewing while wearing dentures can be stressful; particularly if you have never worn them before. The good news is that you don’t have to deprive yourself of your favorite foods, all you have to do is be patient and learn techniques that will make it easy and less stressful to chew.

If you have never worn dentures before then don’t be shocked when the food isn’t as flavorful. This loss of flavor is simply because your brain is receiving stronger signals regarding your dentures which overpowers messages from the taste buds. Overtime, your body will adjust to the presence of the dentures and your sense of taste will return to normal.

If you have never worn dentures before then it is less stressful to start out with soft foods such as eggs, cooked vegetables and soft meats like sea food and chicken. Overtime, you will master the skill of chewing food while wearing your dentures and you can take on hard-to-chew foods such as red meat.

Cut hard-to-chew foods such as carrots and steak into small pieces and chew them slowly. Consider using denture adhesive to keep the dentures firmly in place, particularly if you are chewing hard foods such as steak. Denture adhesives are great for people who have never worn dentures before because they secure the dentures on the gums preventing them from slipping and falling off.

Try to even out the pressure on the dentures by chewing half of the food on the back left of the mouth and the other half on the back-right side.

Although eating whole grain bread and cereals is healthy, these grains can easily get lodged in your dentures. To avoid such a situation, accompany the grains with a lot of water. Although raw fruits and vegetables are essential for a balanced diet, they can be very hard to chew if you have dentures on; particularly hard fruits such as carrots, apples and corn-on-the-cob. Biting into these hard foods puts a lot of pressure on the front teeth and this can dislodge dentures. Go for a whole fruit smoothie instead; a whole fruit smoothie is a puree of the entire fruit including the skin to ensure you still get all the essential nutrients. It may not be easy to give up eating raw vegetables but with a little research, you will be able to get many creative and delicious fruit smoothies that will be a great alternative to raw fruits.

Common issues that many denture-wearers deal with and how to effectively resolve them:

Keep in mind that if your dentures are giving you any problems, then you need to seek the advice of your dentist immediately. In a nutshell, here are a few common issues and their plausible solutions.

Constantly slipping dentures:

In case you are experiencing this problem, you need to visit your dentist so that your dentures are rebased, relined or replaced. The dentist will ascertain which step is most appropriate to fix the situation so that your dentures can fit perfectly

Difficulty chewing:

Although it is difficult to chew some foods while wearing dentures, sometimes this difficulty can be caused by improper alignment of the lower and upper dentures or with the natural teeth. This lack of balance disrupts chewing.

Excess saliva in the mouth:

Since your mouth will be hosting a foreign object, the salivary glands may over produce saliva. With time, your mouth will adjust and the salivary glands will return back to normal.

The uncomfortable feeling of a full mouth:

If you have never worn dentures before, then you might feel like the dentures are too big and are pushing your lips forward. Wear the dentures often and, with time, the muscles of your mouth will adapt. After time, you will get the hang of it and you will feel comfortable.

Infections associated with wearing dentures:

Failing to maintain oral hygiene while wearing dentures can cause a variety of mouth infections. These infections include-

Chelitis

This is an extremely painful infection that causes corners of your mouth to swell and crack. It is caused by yeast overgrowth. When your dentures do not fit well, yeast accumulates in the moist areas of your mouth. Chelitis can easily be prevented by regularly visiting your dentist to ensure your dentures are fitted well.

Stomatitis

This is another common infection that is also caused by yeast overgrowth. The symptoms are hardly recognizable in the early stages. Later on you may notice red bumps on your palate.

Effective home-made denture cleaners:

Although most denture-wearers only trust commercial products to clean their dentures, there are some effective home-made denture cleaners that can come in handy-

Vodka

Vodka is an excellent disinfectant for your dentures. Additionally, it also whitens dentures. You can re-use vodka several times. All you have to do is soak your dentures overnight in vodka then rinse them thoroughly before putting them back on. Keep in mind that before using any of these home based denture-cleaners, it is advisable to seek the advice of your dentist first.

Peroxide and Baking Soda

When peroxide and baking soda are combined, they make a great denture-soaking solution. Dissolve two teaspoons of baking soda and then add enough peroxide to cover the dentures completely. Peroxide can be substituted with water.

Bleach

Bleach can be used to whiten discolored dentures and for disinfection. Simply mix a cup of water, a cup of bleach and add one teaspoon of water softener. Let your dentures soak in this solution for 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse the dentures thoroughly with clean water before putting them back on. If your dentures have any metallic parts or have a soft lining, then avoid using bleach.

White Vinegar

White vinegar is a great and effective natural disinfectant that not only cleans dentures, but also inhibits the growth of fungus on the surface of dentures. Mix white vinegar and water in equal parts and soak your dentures overnight. This will significantly reduce the chances of yeast overgrowth that causes stomatitis and chelitis.

Effective ways to prevent your dentures from staining or discoloration:

Stained or discolored dentures are not only visually unpleasant but also contain harmful bacteria that can compromise the health and hygiene of your mouth. Follow these simple tips to prevent your dentures from staining or discoloring-

Avoid Smoking 

Tobacco stains natural teeth as well as dentures. Try and limit the number of cigarettes you smoke in a day to prevent staining your dentures permanently. If you have to smoke tobacco, then ensure that your denture cleaning routine is twice as thorough.

Eat Crunchy Fruits

Fruits such as apples have natural bleaching agents that can help keep your dentures white and glowing. On the other hand, foods such as berries, balsamic vinegar and soy sauce can stain dentures. The solution is simple, follow up the staining foods with apples, or a thorough cleaning, to mitigate the damage.

Ultrasonic Cleaning

This is one of the most effective and revolutionary ways of cleaning dentures. Apart from removing stains, ultrasonic cleaning will also come in handy in preventing the accumulation of bacteria and the overgrowth of yeast.

High Quality Products

Your dentist will advise you on which brand to choose. Before buying dentures, ask your dentist about which brand manufactures high quality products that are both durable, easy to maintain and not easily stained. Resist buying extremely cheap brands that are poor quality, as they will end up costing you more in the long run.

A Strict Oral Routine

By adhering to a regular routine you are preventing permanent staining of your dentures. Only use denture cleaning products that are approved by your dentist and ensure you follow the instructions of the manufacturer.

To be safe and prevent damaging or permanently staining your dentures, avoid using any cleaning materials that are not approved by your dentist. Additionally, ensure that you strictly adhere to all the instructions of the manufacturer concerning denture cleaning supplies.

Cleaning dentures can be a daunting task, particularly when you are just starting out. This is because cleaning dentures means triple the work; you have to clean your mouth, your natural teeth and also clean the dentures. To ensure that your dentures are clean, free from bacteria and comfortable in your mouth you have to care for them and clean them regularly using the safe products that are approved by your dentist as mentioned above. With these tips, coupled with regular visits to your dentist for guidance and advice, you will be able to live with dentures hassle-free.

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