For people with missing teeth, dentures play an important role in improving quality of life, from maintaining proper speech and face shape to preserving the ability to chew and eat. Unfortunately, it is quite easy for denture wearers to develop certain bad habits that will not only cause them harm but reduce the lifespan of their dentures. As a denture wearer, you need to avoid these bad habits in order to get the best outcome from your denture solution.
Some of the bad habits you need to avoid as a denture wearer include;
1. Not Wearing Your Dentures Regularly
This habit is especially common with new denture wearers. While it may seem harmless at first, not wearing your dentures regularly can be very problematic for you. One of the reasons is that it makes adjusting to your dentures difficult. New dentures may feel foreign in your mouth, but the best way to get used to them is to wear them all day, only taking them out at night.
Another reason why you need to wear your dentures regularly is so they do not get damaged. When not soaking, your dentures need to be in your mouth as allowing them to dry out will only cause warping, which alters their fit in your mouth and will likely require repairs from a denturist.
2. Wearing Your Dentures to Sleep
While it is ideal for you to wear your dentures throughout the day, you shouldn’t go to sleep with them in. This is because your gums and mouth also need time to rest and recover from having to hold your dentures in place throughout the day. Removing your dentures at night also gives you a chance to clean your gums and any remaining teeth so there is no build-up of bacteria.
3. Eating Hard and Sticky Foods
Once you start wearing dentures, you will need to keep hard and sticky foods like crunchy carbs, ice cubes, sticky candies and tough meat at a minimum or, at the very least, find a less damaging alternative. When you do consume these foods, caution needs to be exercised to avoid damaging your dentures. For example, when eating things like steak, always go for a tender cut that is not overcooked.
4. Neglecting To Clean Your Dentures Properly
With dentures, you need to do more than just rinsing and soaking the prosthesis in water. Dentures should always be brushed with a soft-bristled toothbrush and some denture cleaner before being soaked in water every night. They should also be rinsed out before wearing in the morning and after every meal.
5. Smoking or Chewing Tobacco
It is already common knowledge that smoking is bad for your natural teeth but many don’t know that it can be just as bad for your dentures. While smoking doesn’t affect the dentures directly (apart from staining), it does reduce the flow of blood to your mouth, thus, impacting your mouth’s ability to heal and causing other issues like sores, inflammation and gum disease.
You should also avoid chewing tobacco as it is just as bad as smoking for your dentures.
6. Nail Biting
Dentures are quite durable but they are not as strong as real teeth so biting or trimming your nails with them can cause chips and cracks. Even if the chipping or cracking doesn’t occur immediately, nail biting can gradually weaken your dentures to the point where they will chip and crack eventually. If you have a habit of biting your nails, teaching yourself to stop ensures that you get your money’s worth from your dentures.
7. Trying To Repair Your Dentures by Yourself
Denture repairs and adjustments are complex processes that require the right expertise and specialised tools to achieve precision. This means that it is never a good idea to DIY a denture repair. If you have any issues with your dentures, take them to a qualified denturist like The Denture Shop for repairs.
8. Neglecting Overall Oral Health and Dental Check-Ups
The fact that you wear dentures and may have no natural teeth left doesn’t mean that you no longer have to visit the dentist or take care of your overall oral health. Your gums and tongue still need to be properly cared for in order to avoid gum disease, inflammations, and the need for frequent denture adjustments. By scheduling a dental visit at least once every 6 months, your dentist gets to examine your dentures and gums, make necessary adjustments and give you advice on how to maintain better overall oral health.
Dentures are an excellent teeth replacement solution, and one of the best ways to enjoy your money’s worth from them is to ensure that you avoid all the denture-related bad habits mentioned above.