Why Denture Wearers Should See a Dentist
Should I still come in for regular dental exams and cleanings if I have dentures?
Regular dental examinations are important for everyone, even for people who wear dentures. You should see your dentist at least twice a year.
When else should I see a dentist?
If you feel discomfort from your dentures, or if they no longer seem to fit, you should make an appointment for an evaluation of the problem. A health issue or a weight gain or loss may affect the fit of your dentures. Your gum ridge can shrink over time, causing your dentures to become loose fitting. One warning sign that you should make a dental appointment is if you start to see sore spots on your gums, which could be the result of ill-fitting dentures causing irritation. Dentures can break, chip or wear down. Don’t try to repair the dentures yourself. You may cause additional dental problems with an inexpert repair.
What does the dentist do?
One reason for denture wearers to regularly visit their dentist is that dentists examine all their patients for signs of oral cancer. If anything suspicious is found, the patient will be referred to a physician for further evaluation. Another reason to see the dentist is to have the fit of your dentures checked, and also have them professionally cleaned.
A dentist may check the bone density in your jaw with a panoramic x-ray. This is because without the pressure of natural teeth, jaw bones sometimes resorb, that is, disintegrate. A dentist may also repair your denture if there is anything defective about it. The dentist will check the condition of any remaining natural teeth you have. Finally, you have an opportunity to talk to the dentist about any of your dental concerns in an environment in which the dentist can make appropriate corresponding examinations or evaluations.
How should I care for my mouth between visits to the dentist?
You should use a soft-bristled toothbrush to brush your gums, tongue and palate every morning before putting in your dentures. This is to stimulate circulation and remove plaque. It’s also a good idea to rinse your mouth with an anti-bacterial mouthwash. Treat your dentures with as much care as if they were your natural teeth.