Following the fitting of new dentures you are advised to wear them for most of the time (except at night) providing your mouth remains comfortable. As your mouth gets used to your new dentures there may be periods of aching or discomfort. If this is the case you are advised to build up your hours of wear slowly – a bit like breaking in a new pair of stiff shoes. Ideally start with 2-3 hours of wear per day and increase by an hour each subsequent week.
If the dentures cause rubbing or ulceration it is best to remove them and see your dentist as they will probably require adjustment. Please wear them for a couple of hours before your appointment to see the dentist so that any areas of rubbing or discomfort can be identified precisely.
It is very important to remove your dentures at night for the gums to remain healthy. For the gums to stay healthy the saliva needs to able to flow freely around the mouth without the denture being in the way.
Even with full dentures, you still need to take good care of your mouth. Every morning and evening, brush your gums, tongue and the roof of your mouth with a soft-bristled brush. This removes plaque and helps the circulation in your mouth. If you wear partial dentures, it is even more important that you brush your teeth thoroughly every day. This will help stop tooth decay and gum disease that can lead to you losing more of your teeth.
The general rule is brush, soak and brush again. Always clean your dentures over a bowl of water or a folded towel in case you drop them. Brush your dentures before soaking, to help remove any food debris. Never soak your dentures in hot water. Using an effervescent (fizzy) denture cleaner will help remove stubborn stains and leave your denture feeling fresher. Some cleaning solutions can be damaging to metal framework dentures or flexible plastic dentures so always follow the manufacturer's instructions. If you are in doubt about the cleaning solutions check with your dentist before using them. Brush the dentures again, as you would your own teeth, being careful not to scrub too hard as this may cause grooves in the surface. We advise using toothpaste on a medium headed toothbrush. Make sure you clean all the surfaces of the denture, including the surfaces that touch your gums.
Dentures are custom made to fit your mouth and you shouldn't need a denture fixative. However, over time, dentures may become loose and not fit as well. When this happens some people prefer to use a fixative for a short time before having them replaced. If you use a fixative extra care needs to be taken when cleaning your mouth and dentures.