According to information from the American College of Prosthodontics, roughly 40 million Americans wear dentures regularly. If you are one of those people, caring for your dentures and your oral healthcare is just as important now as it ever was. Below are some helpful tips for keeping your dentures and your mouth clean in an earth-friendly way.
Removable Partial or Full Dentures
Dentures are removable frames that hold one or more artificial teeth, and they’re primarily used to provide all the functions of natural teeth. They allow for comfortable eating, restore your smile, improve the shape and appearance of facial muscles, decrease the rate at which bone loss occurs, and even allow you to speak and enunciate more clearly in many cases. Today’s dentures are very realistic, and thanks to improvements in technology, they are also very comfortable once the right fit has been established. Both partial and full dentures are intended to be removed and rinsed after every meal, and both your dentures and your mouth should be thoroughly cleaned at least once every day.
Start with the Right Supplies
While many people tend to rely on effervescent cleaners to deep clean their dentures overnight, the truth is that these are not effective on their own. They can be used in addition to manual cleaning methods, but they are not intended to be used as a standalone means of cleaning your dentures. To keep your mouth and your dentures sparkling clean, you will need a nonabrasive toothpaste or denture cleaner as well as a soft-bristled toothbrush. Be careful not to use your standard toothpaste on your dentures; some of these can be too abrasive and actually damage them. Instead, look for a toothpaste that uses diatomaceous earth or silica paste as a polishing agent.
Get in the Right Routine
Now that you understand the importance of regularly cleaning your dentures and you’ve stocked up on all the right denture-friendly (and earth-friendly!) oral care supplies, it’s time to get yourself in the habit of cleaning your dentures and your mouth the right way. Aside from rinsing your dentures and your mouth after each meal, you should do the following once a day, ideally right before going to bed:
- Remove your dentures and use a soft-bristled toothbrush that has been moistened with warm water to clean the inside of your mouth and your gums, including the roof of your mouth. If you use a denture adhesive, make sure that you remove any remnants that may stick to your gums or palate.
- Brush your dentures thoroughly with a soft-bristled toothbrush and a non-abrasive toothpaste. Be careful to pay attention to any areas where food particles may become stuck between the teeth and the ridges where adhesive may be more difficult to remove.
- Soak your dentures overnight. They should be kept moist at all times in order to retain their shape. Though denture cleaning solutions are nice, they are not necessary as long as you are thoroughly cleaning your dentures before soaking them.
- Before wearing your dentures again in the morning, rinse them thoroughly, especially if you use a denture-cleaning solution in your soak. The chemicals can make you feel sick or even burn your gums.
That’s all there is to it! Taking care of your dentures not only ensures that you look and feel your best each day, but it also helps to ensure that you get the most life out of your dentures as you can. As always, if you experience any kind of discomfort, make sure to see the dentist, and schedule a checkup at least once every year – or more often if your dentist requires it.