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Adjusting to new dentures

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We have touched on dentures in an earlier article, but based on queries received I have decided to do another article addressing these queries.

Getting used to new dentures can take some time. Denture problems are common, especially in the early days after fitting. Even the very best made dentures are foreign to your mouth and will feel as such for the first time.{{more}}

Your tongue, lips, cheeks, gums and any natural teeth all need time for getting used to dentures.

Common problems with new dentures

1. Denture Irritation

Minor irritation, especially on eating, is one of the common problems with new dentures. Small adjustments can be made at the review appointment to remove any irritations. If they are causing any severe irritation, remove your dentures.

Several review appointments and adjustments may be necessary before the dentures can be adjusted exactly as needed.

2. Denture Fit

Dentures may feel a little loose at first, especially lower complete dentures. It takes some time for the dentures to ‘bed-in’. The muscles of the cheeks, lips and tongue need time for getting used to the dentures. These areas need this time to learn how to keep the denture in place without your thinking about it. Wearing the dentures for the first night after fitting may help you adjust, but after this take them out every night.

However, even the best complete lower dentures will never feel as secure as upper dentures. This is unfortunately one of the unavoidable lower denture problems.

While getting used to dentures, it may be useful to use a denture adhesive. There are many types, including gels, pastes and strips.

Adhesives can give extra confidence when eating and speaking as your mouth is adapting to dentures. However, in the long-term, they are not usually necessary with well-fitting dentures.

3. Eating with Dentures

Getting used to eating with your new dentures will also take time and is one of the common early denture problems.

Start with liquids and soft foods such as soups, soft bread and eggs. Avoid harder-to-eat foods at the beginning. Build up your exposure to these harder foods over time, once you are more comfortable. Have patience and stick at it. You will soon master eating more difficult foods.

You will need time to learn new mouth movements and learn where to chew down on food.

Tips for eating with dentures at the beginning include:

-Cut food into small pieces.

-Don’t bite up and down on food with your front teeth. This may dislodge the dentures. Use the side and back teeth more at the start.

-Use a sideways chewing motion to eat food.

-Don’t tear or pull food when eating off a fork.

-Having food on both sides of the mouth can help keep the dentures balanced.

4. Speaking with Dentures

Again, speaking normally will take practice. The first three days or so are the most difficult. The dentures themselves will feel awkward to speak with. This problem will also be compounded by increased saliva flow in the first few days.

Practice and a little patience are needed in these few days. Your speech will soon return to normal as you get used to them.

Some words will remain difficult for longer. Practise saying these words aloud.

Dr Keith John

Email:drkeithjohn@gmail.com

Clinic: SVG DentalCorporation

Telephone: 784-456-2220

Cell: 784-526-0752

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