How Should I Care for My Dentures?
Dentures are a convenient, affordable way to replace missing teeth, and today’s modern dentures are comfortable, attractive, and long-lasting – if you treat them right.
At Dentists of Whitter, we have been helping patients in the Greater Los Angeles area improve their smile with custom-fitted removable dentures that work well and look great. We want you to enjoy your dentures as much as possible, and the best way to do that is through proper denture care.
What’s the Best Way to Care for Removable Dentures?
Daily cleaning and maintenance will keep your removable dentures looking and feeling their best. This regular cleaning will also mitigate and lessen stains on your dentures.
The basics of removable denture care include taking out and rinsing your dentures each time after you eat, if possible. Make sure you do this in a secure place and use a towel in the sink in case you drop your dentures. If you are in a public bathroom that is not hygienic you might want to wait until you return home.
When you are home, use a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean your dentures (not while they are in your mouth but when they are removed). Do this at least once per day. Use a nonabrasive cleanser made specifically for dentures. This will remove food and other deposits that can affect the dentures and also irritate your gums if not cleaned off.
How Do You Remove Dentures?
Removing dentures may seem a little awkward at first, but don’t worry, you will get used to it. First, prepare your sink area to protect your dentures if dropped. Then, rinse your mouth with warm water.
Take your top denture out first. Use the thumb to gently hold the front teeth and push upwards and then out towards your nose to take the top denture out.
For the bottom denture, rock the denture carefully while removing it very slowly.
How Can I Keep My Dentures Safe When I Remove Them?
You want to be sure to handle your dentures with care, so you don’t damage them. The plastic and metal parts can be bent if you are not careful.
One of the most common problems is to drop dentures after removing them. In fact, you can pretty much expect to drop them. So, the challenge is to set up your space so dropping them won’t break them. Sinks are made of a very hard material. You can fill the sink with warm (not hot!) water, which will mean the dentures will hopefully fall into the water. Or, you can cover your sink or countertop with a folded towel so your dentures will have a soft landing.
Can I Rinse or Soak My Dentures in Hot Water?
Hot water is definitely a no-no with dentures. Do not use hot or boiling water to rinse or soak your dentures as it can warp and ruin your dentures. You can use warm water for rinsing dentures to get rid of food particles and remove dental cleaner residue.
Should I Soak My Dentures Overnight?
Yes, you should always soak your dentures either in water or a denture solution designed for overnight soaking. This is important because dried out dentures can become warped and will no longer fit properly. Ask us at Dentists of Whitter what type of denture soaking solution we recommend for your particular type of removable dentures.
Do I Need to Clean My Mouth When My Dentures Are Removed?
Yes, your mouth needs proper dental hygiene even if you are cleaning your “teeth” aka removable dentures when they are removed. First, it is important that you do not brush your dentures while they are in your mouth. Dental cleaning solution should never be put in your mouth.
Once your dentures are removed, use a soft toothbrush on your remaining teeth. You can also brush your tongue and roof of your mouth. Carefully clean your gums of dental adhesive. You might use some sterile gauze to do this.
Do I Need to Rinse My Dentures Before Putting Them Back in My Mouth?
Yes, it is important that you rinse your dentures thoroughly before putting them back into your mouth. This is because most denture-soaking solutions, while safe for your dentures, are not safe for you. They are toxic to the human body and can contain harsh chemicals.
What Types of Cleaners Can I Use on my Dentures?
Make sure you use denture cleaner that is compatible with your dentures. Dentures might look and act like your real teeth, but they need a different type of cleanser than your teeth. So, while it might be tempting to use regular toothpaste on your dentures, don’t do that. This is because commercial toothpaste often contains abrasives that, while mild for real teeth, can harm fake denture teeth.
Whitening toothpaste also won’t help brighten your dentures, so don’t both. Bleach in particular can damage dentures and weaken them. The metal attachments can also corrode from bleach.
You might also be tempted to use vinegar or soap to clean dentures, but that is also not recommended. If the wrong cleaners damage or scratch the surface of your dentures, plaque could build up, creating a home for bacteria. This will not only make your dentures smell and taste bad, the bacteria could potentially infect your gums.
How Long Should My Dentures Last?
Most dentures will last for at least five if not seven years or possibly more if you take really good care of them. This is why you need to clean removable dentures daily. Also, check in with us at Dentists of Whittier every six months to make sure your dentures are still stable and fit properly.
Should My Dentures Be Refitted?
If your dentures start feeling loose or don’t fit quite right, contact us right away at Dentists of Whittier. Poorly fitting dentures can negatively impact your oral health and cause irritation and even infection in the mouth.
Need Help With Dentures in Southern California?
Dentists of Whittier can help you with removable dentures. Whether you need a new pair or want to get your existing dentures checked out, we are here for you. Scheduling regular dental checkups with us will also help us ensure that your dentures are properly fitted and working well for your needs.
Contact Dentists of Whittier today at (562) 414-5025 if you need dentures in Southern California. We can also replace and upgrade your existing dentures. And don’t forget to ask a member of our friendly dental staff how to best take care of your dentures – we are happy to help!