Like anything else new to you, wearing dentures takes getting used to. The adjustment period may take weeks, and both physical and emotional factors are involved. You may find it difficult to control your dentures at first, but with practice you will gradually learn to live comfortably with dentures.
Eating with dentures takes practice. Start out with foods that do not require hard chewing. When biting into foods such as sandwiches, remember - do not bite directly with your very front teeth, because this will dislodge the dentures. Bite towards the corner of the denture, push in and twist, rather than using a pulling motion. Take small bites and chew slowly.
It way seem difficult to speak with your new dentures. If your dentures "click" when you talk, try speaking more slowly and avoid motions that raise or move the lower denture. With practice you will learn to hold the lower denture in place with you lip, tongue, and cheek muscles.
Cleaning & Storage:
Developing good oral hygiene habits can prevent many problems with your dentures. A sticky, colorless film of bacteria, called plaque, tends to form on all dentures. If the plaque is not removed, it can harden into tartar and cause denture odor. These guidelines will help keep your dentures in good condition:
Soaking dentures is not a substitute for regular brushing. Use a brush specially designed for dentures. You may use a commercial denture paste if you wish, although Ivory soap or plain baking soda will work just as effectively.
Never use extremely hot water or rough household cleansers to clean your dentures. Put a washcloth or towel in the sink and hold the dentures in the palm of your hand to brush them. The cloth will provide a cushion in case the denture are dropped. Rinse your denture thoroughly after brushing.
Brush your tongue and gums with a soft toothbrush.
Rinse your mouth well first thing in the morning, after meals, and before going to bed at night.
Use adhesive powders and creams only as a temporary measure unless the dentist has recommended otherwise.
If tartar builds up on dentures, combine a cup of water with one tablespoon of white vinegar and soak them in the mixture overnight.
For tough stains, soak complete dentures overnight in a cup of water with a tablespoon of bleach. Brush dentures and rinse them before wearing.
Do not soak partial dentures in bleach or bleach water.
To store dentures, it is best to place them in a container of water or a ziploc bag and a small amount of bleach (1 tblsp. per 8 oz.)
Do not let your mouth become extremely sore or painful. If you do develop a sore or pressure spot, please come back and let the dentist adjust your denture.
Most people clench, grip and grind their teeth to some extent during their sleep. Therefore, most dentists advise sleeping without your dentures so that your gums and jaws can rest during the night. If you are used to sleeping in your dentures, try leaving the lower denture out to prevent night grinding.
If your dentures break, make an appointment to have the dentist repair them. Do not try to fix them yourself. Repair kits and household glues do not make satisfactory repairs, and they can even be harmful.
Once you become comfortable with wearing dentures, you may think you never need to see a dentist again. However, yearly check-ups are important because the tissues of your mouth can shrink or change shape. Dentures can become loose and ill-fitting. Regular examinations to check for needed adjustments or relines will maximize comfort and efficiency.