Tooth loss is incredibly common — so common that nearly half of American adults have lost at least one tooth, and more than 35 million American adults have no teeth at all. Fortunately, if you’re missing one, several, or all their teeth, dentures can restore your smile, bite function, and appearance.
If you’re wearing dentures now or plan on getting dentures, the good news is, that they’re time-tested and easy to get used to. But they do need a little special care, and that means thorough cleaning at least once a day.
At Novi Family Dentistry, Abir Faraj, DDS, and her team help patients in Novi, Michigan, adjust to their new dentures with helpful tips and denture adjustments for ultimate comfort. In this post, learn what you should do to keep your dentures fresh and clean.
Gather your supplies
Cleaning your dentures is a straightforward process, but you do need to pay attention to the supplies you’re using. First, you need a soft-bristled toothbrush. Avoid stiff bristles since these can scratch the surface of your dentures over time. Have a brush specifically for your dentures, using a different brush for your teeth.
Next, you need a denture cleanser or a non-abrasive toothpaste. Skip whitening pastes since these can also damage the denture surface. Using a mild dish soap is OK too. You might also want to use a special solution for soaking your dentures overnight.
Before you start cleaning your dentures, rinse them off. Use lukewarm or cool water and rinse thoroughly. This step dislodges tiny particles to make brushing more effective. Don’t use very hot water, since that could make your dentures too pliable, resulting in problems with the way they fit.
Now you’re ready to brush. Use your soft-bristled brush to gently but thoroughly clean every surface of your dentures. Thorough brushing gets rid of sticky plaque and bacteria that can lead to bad breath and problems with your gums.
Remove all traces of denture adhesive, and make sure to brush the clasps that hold your dentures in place. Once you’re done brushing, rinse your dentures to remove all traces of toothpaste or cleanser.
Use a denture soak
At night, you can take your dentures out and leave them out until the morning. Many people use special soaking agents to help destroy bacteria and freshen their dentures overnight, so they’re all ready to wear in the morning.
Ask Dr. Faraj to recommend a soaking agent for your needs. If you don’t use a soaking agent, be sure to keep your dentures in their case so they don’t get damaged.
Clean your gums (and remaining teeth)
Once your dentures are clean, don’t forget to clean your gums. For people with remaining teeth, brushing (and hopefully flossing) is automatic. But if you have no remaining teeth, you still need to carefully brush your gums to get rid of bacteria and prevent infections.
One more tip: Consider carrying a small bottle of mouthwash or a soft-bristled brush with you when you go out. Having these items on hand can help you keep your dentures fresh and clean after meals, so you always feel confident.
If you’re missing any teeth, dentures help preserve your bite function and prevent further problems, including additional tooth loss. To learn more about dentures and other tooth replacement options, call 313-646-7903 or book an appointment online at Novi Family Dentistry today.