denture-process

Living well
with dentures

While each denture journey is unique, here are some typical milestones you could expect when getting dentures:

Your dentist will take out the teeth that need to come out so that you can be properly fitted for dentures.

Depending on how many teeth you have extracted, the time required for your gums to heal will vary. Your dental professional may give you a temporary set of dentures until your permanent dentures are ready.

After your gums heal, your dentist will take a preliminary impression of your oral tissues, a final detailed impression, and then a master cast model of your mouth.

You and your dentist will choose from a range of tooth shapes, sizes, and colors that accurately fit your face and mouth. If you can, have a family member or friend be there to help you choose your new teeth. Once you and your dentist are pleased with the shape, size and color of your teeth, your final dentures can then be completed.

This is when your new dentures will be placed in your mouth until your next visit. Your dentist will make any adjustments to ensure a proper fit.

The first day

Dentures may feel too large, your lips may feel like they're being pushed forward, and you may experience a slight gag reaction. But don't worry. These sensations are normal and quite temporary.

When it's time to eat, start off with soft foods like fish, eggs, chopped meat, and cooked vegetables. Take small bites, chew slowly and avoid biting with your front teeth.

Days 2 to 14

At this point, you may be noticing increased levels of saliva and some sore spots. Try to swallow more frequently. If soreness persists for more than a few days, contact your dentist. Remember, the Academy of General Dentistry recommends that you take your dentures out for at least eight hours a day to give your gums a chance to rest.

Days 15 to 90

You should notice that wearing your dentures longer makes the transition easier. You should also notice decreased saliva levels and more ease with eating and speaking. Gradually try harder-to-eat vegetables, meats and fruits, as you feel more comfortable.

To help you do that, consider using a few pea-size amounts of a denture adhesive cream like Super Poligrip® as directed. Not only will it improve the force of your bite, it is clinically proven to help seal out food particles like strawberry or kiwi seeds. Plus Super Poligrip® Free is flavor-free so it won't affect the taste of your favorite foods.

With proper care, a set of dentures can last from 5 - 10 years. During that time, it’s normal for the shape of your mouth to change, or you may find that the shape of your mouth changes as time goes on. If that happens, your dentures may need rebasing or relining to ensure a proper fit.

Rebasing is the replacement of your denture base – the pink part of your dentures.

Relining is a resurfacing of the tissue side of a denture with new base/pink material in order to improve the fit of the denture.

Remember, adjusting your dentures is more complicated than it looks. Do not try to adjust your dentures yourself – let the dentist handle all adjustments. And if you are not sure that they fit properly, call to schedule an appointment with your dentist.

With proper care, a set of dentures can last from 5-10 years. During that time, it is normal for the shape of your mouth to change, or you may find that the shape of your mouth changes as it heals from tooth extraction. If that happens, your dentures may need rebasing or relining to ensure a proper fit. Contact your dentist if you’re feeling discomfort.

Remember, good oral health involves more than teeth, so visit your dentist regularly for oral health screenings. Visit your dentist at least once a year to ensure that your dentures will continue to fit comfortably in your mouth. Plus, even if you do not have any natural teeth remaining, your dentist will check on the overall health of your mouth.