Are you getting your first pair of dentures soon? This is an exciting time, but it’s normal to be nervous, too. There are some common denture problems that people can encounter when they first get dentures. Here’s what to expect when you first start wearing dentures and what you can expect as you adjust.
It takes some practice to eat with dentures. When you first get your new dentures, eating may be difficult. When you bite down or chew, your dentures could slip out of position. Some types of foods, like nuts and seeds, can get stuck under your dentures and cause some discomfort.
To overcome these problems, stick to easy-to-eat foods when your dentures are new. Eat soft foods and cut them into small pieces to make chewing easier. To keep your dentures stable, try to chew your food with both sides of your mouth at the same time.
As you get used to your dentures, you’ll become more confident with your eating skills. People who wear dentures can eventually eat most of the same foods they ate before they had dentures.
Speaking can be difficult when you have new dentures, too. They may feel like a foreign object in your mouth, and that can interfere with speech. Learning how to move your tongue around them to form the correct sounds can be challenging, but in time, speaking with dentures will become second nature.
When you get your new dentures, practice speaking in private. Try reading aloud from your favorite book or talking to yourself until you feel comfortable. Singing along with your favorite songs can also help you get used to form words. In no time, you’ll feel confident speaking with your new dentures.
Occasionally, you may notice that your dentures slip out of position. This can sometimes happen when you smile, laugh or cough. It could also happen while you’re eating or talking. If your new dentures slip out of place, gently reposition them by biting down and swallowing.
Over time, you’ll learn to hold your dentures in place with the muscles in your cheeks and tongue. Denture adhesive is also helpful for keeping your dentures in place. If you find you’re not getting used to your new dentures and the slipping continues, see your dentist. The dentures may need to be adjusted to fit more snugly.
Cleaning dentures isn’t the same as cleaning natural teeth, so your new daily routine can take some getting used to. At first, you may not be quite sure what to do. You may discover that you’re not cleaning your dentures often enough, not using the right cleaners, or damaging your dentures as you clean them. Fortunately, these problems are all avoidable.
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing your dentures daily. Avoid regular toothpaste because they are abrasive and can scratch your dentures. Instead, use a commercial denture cleaner. The ADA explains that you can also use a mild hand soap or dishwashing liquid to clean dentures safely.
To brush your dentures, you need to remove them from your mouth. If you’re not careful, you could drop your new dentures while you’re brushing them. This could lead to chips, breaks or other damage. To protect your dentures, you can lay a towel in the bottom of your sink to cushion the dentures if they fall. Filling the sink with water is another option.
Getting used to your new pair of dentures will take some time. Be patient, and before you know it, your denture problems will resolve. If you have lingering denture problems, don’t hesitate to see your dentist for help.
Here are some ways to treat various denture problems:
Make sure your dentures fit. Over time, your gums and bones will change and your dentures won’t fit as well. When this happens, your dentures need to be adjusted, modified, or replaced by your dentist. Never try to adjust your dentures yourself.
Speak slowly. When you first get dentures, it may be hard for you to say certain words. Be patient. Practice saying the challenging words aloud and speak slowly. If your dentures move around when you laugh or smile, gently bite down and swallow to put them back in place. Check with your dentist to adjust the fit.
Eat soft foods. If you are having trouble eating, follow these tips:
Eating will become easier as you get used to your dentures. In time, you should be able to eat most foods.
Use an adhesive. Denture adhesives help your dentures stay in place and make them feel more secure. But denture adhesives should not be used to fix old or poorly fitting dentures – and should generally be avoided. When using an adhesive, follow the instructions carefully. Use only a small amount.
Along with making sure they fit well, it is important to take good care of your dentures. Here are some tips to keep your dentures working and looking their best:
Never sleep with your dentures. Unless your dentist advises you to do so for a specific time, such as after multiple extractions and initial delivery of new dentures, do not sleep with your dentures.
Handle dentures with care. Your dentures are delicate and can break easily. When holding your dentures, stand over a sink filled with water or place a towel on the counter. That way your dentures will be protected in case you accidentally drop them. Also, keep your dentures safely out of the reach of children and pets.
Clean your dentures daily. Here are some tips for cleaning your dentures:
Clean your mouth daily. Clean and massage your gums, tongue, and roof of your mouth each day before putting in your dentures. This will help keep your mouth healthy.
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