Dentures FAQs | Detailed answers to your questions

Dentures are prosthetic devices fitted to the mouth to replace a lost tooth (or teeth). They look just like natural teeth and are usually removable.

Dentures may be partial or complete, meaning you can choose to replace only a few missing teeth or replace all teeth on the top or bottom gum line.

This article answers all your burning questions about dentures. Keep reading!

What are dentures made of?

Dentures are usually made from acrylic plastic.

Although you can also choose porcelain dentures, acrylic plastics are stronger and fit more securely to the jaw than other materials. Moreover, acrylic dentures are easier to adjust.

How many types of dentures are there?

There are two types of Dentures; those that replace all of your natural teeth (complete dentures) and those used to replace only a few missing teeth (partial dentures).

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Complete dentures can be either conventional dentures or immediate dentures.

How long do dentures last?

Complete dentures can last for as long as 5-10 years, depending on how you use and care for them. Partial dentures have a longevity period of about 15 years.

What are permanent dentures?

Permanent dentures are appliances (dental implants) fused into the jawbone to help keep dentures firm. These implants replace the missing tooth root, providing a stronger base for your artificial teeth (dentures). 

Can I have dentures put on the same day as teeth removal?

Yes, immediate dentures can be fixed into the mouth on the same day as your tooth removal. They are custom-made and can be used as soon as the extraction is over. 

In the case of a conventional denture, you may have to wait a few months as they take a lot longer to fit and produce.  

Note that you should only use immediate dentures as a temporary option; long-term use could cause damage to the jaw.

Can I get dentures after not having teeth for a long time?

Although your jaw will likely shrink after a prolonged absence of your natural teeth, it may be possible to still get dentures after not having teeth for a long time. Consult a dentist to examine your mouth to determine the best line of action for you.

Can I perfectly color match my denture to the rest teeth?

Yes, partial dentures can be designed to match the rest of your teeth. See a professional denturist or prosthodontist to assist you with the process. 

Can I replace my teeth with dentures after losing them to oral cancer?

Although this may require an advanced dental procedure, oral implants can help replace your teeth with dentures after losing them to oral cancer. 

What should I do if my dentures feel heavy and I can’t close my mouth?

The heavy feeling in your mouth may be because you’ve previously used dentures. Usually, it will take several weeks to adapt to their feel completely.

If you feel the denturist did not do your dentures properly, ask your dentist to inspect them.

Can I eat normally with dentures?

Dentures are artificial teeth, so it may take a few weeks to adapt to them. 

Avoid hard-to-chew meals and sticky foods for the first week after your surgery. Once you fully adjust to wearing dentures, you may return to your usual diet. 

Avoid foods like whole nuts, crunchy fruits, crackers, and chewing gum, as they may stick to the acrylic plastic in the denture and damage their seal.

Can I sleep in my dentures?

Yes, you may sleep in your dentures, but removing them every night before bed is advisable. This will help allow your jaws to relax and also prevent gum inflammation. 

Consider soaking your dentures overnight in warm water before you go to sleep.

If you must use your dentures 24 hours a day, maintain adequate oral hygiene, such as cleaning your mouth twice daily.

Do dentures hurt?

If you’re using dentures for the first time, you may experience slight discomfort or irritation in the first few weeks, especially if you just had your tooth removed. 

Where you’ve previously worn dentures and now have a new set, you can expect the pain to last longer than a month. 

We recommend regular visits to your dentist to assess the state of your dentures. 

How do I know when it’s time to reline dentures?

If the dentures no longer fit well or irritate your gum, it’s a sign that their bases need to be refitted (or relined). 

Generally, it is best to get a denture reline every two years. 

What should I do about excess saliva after a reline?

At first, your dentures may feel too large after a reline, and this may cause you to salivate more often. When this happens, you can keep a piece of candy in your mouth to help absorb the excess saliva or swallow more often.

The salivation will reduce as your mouth gets used to your relined dentures.

Why is my denture loose despite having implants under my jawbone?

Usually, dental implants get worn out with use. Dentures could also become loose due to tissue changes in your mouth, such as in the case of bone resorption. Visit your dentist to have your jaw examined.

My dentures are still unstable even after using several adhesives – what should I do?

If your dentures do not stay in place despite adjusting them, you should see a prosthodontist to get them relined or redesigned if necessary. 

The back of my dentures pops up when eating. What to do?

It is common to experience some instability with your dentures while eating. To prevent this, distribute your food evenly on both sides of your back teeth before chewing. 

How do I remove adhesives without pain?

Sometimes, denture adhesives may stick to your gum, irritating the area. To remove any adhesives left on your gums and palate, gargle with warm water for 30 seconds twice. 

If the adhesive doesn’t go, gently brush your teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste.

How much do dentures cost? 

Complete dentures can cost anywhere from $600 – $1000. Partial dentures, on the other hand, cost between $300 to $500. 

How to care for dentures 

Dentures are artificial teeth and gums and require special care. Below are some tips to note when using dentures.

  • Brush your dentures daily.

Gently remove the dentures and soak them in clean water. Using a soft-bristled brush and a denture cleaner, gently brush the denture and rinse them in warm water. Avoid using regular toothpaste as this may damage dentures.

  • Remove and rinse dentures after eating.
  • Keep your dentures moist at all times to prevent them from drying out. Soak them in clean water overnight when they are not in your mouth.
  • Do not expose dentures to hot water as this could shrink them.
  • Always use the recommended adhesives to connect the dentures to your gums. This will ensure food doesn’t stick beneath your dentures.
  • After removing dentures, always clean your mouth (tongue, cheeks, and palate).
  • Do not use bleach on your dentures unless advised by your dentist. 
  • Ensure regular visits to your dentist to assess the state of your dentures.

I need dentures. Where do I start?

The first step to getting a full or partial denture is to visit a denturist or prosthodontist for a comprehensive check-up of your mouth. This way, he can assess the state of your gums and jaw and recommend the best type of dentures for you.

A prosthodontist is a doctor who specializes in replacing missing or damaged teeth. 

Final note

If fixed correctly, dentures do not constitute a lot of problems. With the above guide, we believe you’ll have an exciting time with your new set of teeth.

Precious is a vast researcher and has a knack for writing. She is also passionate about learning and personal development. She is a graduate of Human Anatomy and is given to helping people live a healthier and happier life.