A great deal of skill has been used in constructing your new dentures and they must be cared for if you are to get the best service from them.
Nothing has been found to be equal to healthy natural teeth, but dentistry has made great progress in replacing them with artificial ones.
These cannot be expected to do everything that natural teeth do, but provided they are used sensibly, they will enable you to eat and speak quite satisfactorily.
Why aren’t my new dentures tight to start with? Settling in Period.
New dentures are not often tight at the moment of fitting, you should allow between 5 to 8 hours for your dentures to settle into your mouth, when this happens they become tighter.
They are not normally tight when first fitted as it takes a little while for the gums to take up the new shape of the dentures and for the upper to gain its full suction and the lower to settle into place.
A new denture will settle fully in approximately 2-4 weeks. During this stage they bed deeper in the mouth and are most likely to cause soreness, this is normal.
We must now adjust them for you, it is not a case of trying to persevere as the mouth can become extremely sore if the dentures are not adjusted. If they become too sore, remove them, revert back to your old dentures until we can get you in for an adjustment. You should now telephone us for an appointment to adjust the dentures.
Even if your mouth is sore, please be sure to wear your dentures for the whole day, if you can tolerate it, before the appointment, otherwise it may be difficult to tell where the pressure spot is.
You should persevere learning to use your new dentures but not if they make you sore.
At first, you may also find that you bite your tongue and cheeks, but this usually corrects itself after a short time when the muscles have adjusted themselves to the new support. Depending on the amount and rate of change occurring in the mouth, an individual may require many adjustment appointments and up to one month to adapt to new dentures.
You Must Not Suffer Soreness!
Remember -if you encounter any problems with your new dentures; tell us and we will rectify them. There is no addition cost for these subsequent visits.
The teeth on your dentures have been placed as near as possible to the exact position you natural teeth occupied. This will support your lips and cheeks and give you as natural an appearance as possible. You can expect to undergo a period of awkwardness while getting used to the dentures. Your first reaction may be that you have suddenly acquired a tremendous mouthful and that your lips are being pushed forward excessively by teeth that seem too big. This should not worry you, because the feeling of fullness will soon wear off as you become accustomed to the new dentures in you mouth. You may think that because they feel very big to you, they will appear big to others. This is not so and there should be no need for embarrassment. You may have a feel of gagging or excessive salivation, but after you have worn the dentures for a short time, these sensations will disappear. While you are learning to use your new dentures, it is necessary to have patience. Control of your dentures may be difficult at first, but gradually it will be automatic. The time required to become accustomed to new dentures varies considerably with each individual: some master their dentures in a very short time; others require weeks of patience to do so. It usually takes an average of four to eight weeks to become fully accustomed to your new dentures.
Speaking may seem strange or even difficult at first. This is because your tongue has to learn where the teeth are. It is a good idea to read aloud to yourself for short periods during the first few days. Take occasional sips of water from a glass, as reading aloud will make your mouth feel dry. There is no need to be embarrassed about speaking; other people are much less aware of the awkwardness than you are. This is because your own voice doesn’t sound the same to other people as it does to you. This is because your own voice doesn’t sound the same to other people as it does to you. When you hear yourself speak, most of the sound reaches your ears by means of vibrations in the bones of the jaw and skull, this varies from the sound that travels through the air in the ordinary way. Therefore, any small changes become much more noticeable to the speaker than to anyone else.
Patients frequently report that the sense of taste is affected when they first wear dentures. They sometimes think that this is caused by the palate being covered by the dentures. In fact, taste buds are only present on the tongue, not in the palate. There are two reasons why food seems to lose some of it’s taste: First the feeling of the food being squashed against the palate is lost; second although the taste buds are working quite normally, the message they send to the brain is interrupted by the large number of sensory nerves in the mouth, telling the brain that a strange new object is in the mouth. As you become more accustomed to your dentures your brain pays less attention to these messages from the sensory nerves. When this happens, food regains its taste.
Eating with Dentures
When the jaw closes into its relaxed positions, the back teeth should meet evenly each side and there should not be any contact with the front teeth in this position. This allows you to chew food on the back teeth without the front teeth interfering and causing movement of the dentures. The front teeth should only meet when the lower jaw moves forward and bites through a sandwich or biscuit etc and then the back teeth take over for chewing, although this will depend on the individuals jaw relationship/bite.
When you receive your new dentures you should practice eating with them slowly, taking in small amounts of food until you become accustomed to them as this will feel strange at first and normally fell quite a mouthful until you get used to them.
When you begin eating with your new dentures, it is important to start slowly. Eating may present difficulties. In fact, it is the most difficult part of mastering your new dentures. You must not be discouraged if you experience a few failures at first: natural teeth are firmly fixed in bone, while artificial dentures only rest on the bone. When chewing on one side you may notice a tendency for the dentures to tip and loosen on the opposite side. Attempt to chew on both sides with the teeth. This will help prevent your dentures from tipping. Provided you are patient and spend the necessary time practising, you will learn to control the dentures automatically by using the muscles of mastication in your mouth. All the muscles must learn what they should and should not do. With some new dentures, it may have been necessary to increase the height of your upper and lower teeth so as to have them contact sooner. With a change such as this, you will have to develop new chewing habits simply because you will be chewing your food at a different position than that of your old dentures. Begin with eating food that does not need hard chewing. Also take smaller mouthfuls and chew slowly and evenly. At first do not bit off with your front teeth; you will learn to do that later. Cut the food into smaller pieces that can easily be put into your mouth, try eating porridge or yoghurt. As you become more skilled at using your dentures, you will be able to try harder and tougher foods, maybe even soft fruit. You may also have difficulty with very thin foods such as lettuce and the skins of apples or tomatoes. You will find apples easy to eat if you peel them into slices or quarters.
Because an artificial denture is a new object in the mouth, you may at first develop an excessive flow of saliva. This reaction is perfectly natural and after a while, it will reduce as you become accustomed to the dentures. The best way to overcome this temporary discomfort is to persevere in wearing the dentures. The use of a peppermint sweet helps. In any case, if you bear in mind that a flow of saliva has always been going on unnoticed in your mouth before you started using your dentures, you quickly realise that it is quite a normal condition. The dentures also require a certain amount of saliva to work properly. Some people have sticky saliva and this really aids in the retention of the upper denture. If you don’t have such saliva, occasionally you will need a light powder fixative to hold the dentures more firmly. A dry mouth also called Xerostomia may cause the dentures to feel loose and occasionally sore as well. See your doctor should this condition exist, as saliva substitutes are readily available.
Night time – Should Dentures Be Worn At Night?
As a rule, it is advisable to remove dentures at night, especially if you have a tendency to grind your teeth when you sleep. This protects your gums if you grind your teeth and allows your saliva to wash around your mouth naturally, cleansing your gums. This will help reduce the chances of gum infections and bad breath. A partial denture must always be removed as it may damage your remaining teeth and gums if left in 24 hours a day.
Removing the dentures may cause a certain amount of distress in some patients. If this occurs, leave the dentures in during the night. If you do insist on wearing your dentures, then you should purchase a very soft bristled tooth brush. Wet this brush with water and brush your gums and palate lightly at bedtime with your dentures out, and again in the morning. This brushing helps to keep your mouth healthy by helping the blood circulate in the area. If new dentures are left out for longer than overnight, irritated areas may swell and you may have difficulty in wearing the dentures comfortably. When you are not wearing the dentures, always put them in water, never let them dry out and never place them in hot water, as they will warp and no longer fit properly.