So you have your new dentures and the perfect smile that you have been dreaming about. How do you care for them so they stay pearly white and last as long as possible? This is a common question amongst denture wearers. Over the past 15 years in practice I have heard of many different methods used by patients to maintain their dentures. Some of which would actually be harmful to the dentures. Today I am going to talk about the best ways to maintain your dentures, so that you get the most out of them.
Denture Cleaning: I find the best way to clean your dentures are as follows. I always tell my patients to start by brushing their dentures with a soft denture brush and liquid soap. This is done to remove and loosen large debris. Never use toothpaste to clean your dentures as this will cause scratching and premature wear to the denture. Once this is complete the dentures can be soaked in a commercial denture cleaner for the time recommended by the manufacturer. Some cleaners only need to be used for 5-10 minutes while others require the denture to be soaked overnight. My personal preference is to use the shorter soak cleaners. After the dentures have been soaked for the recommended time, I suggest thoroughly drying them. At this point they need to be inspected by holding them in the light. If they are clean the denture will be shiny and reflect back the light all over the denture surface. Areas that appear dull usually need to be brushed further to prevent buildup of calculus and stains. Certain foods and drinks are more likely to cause stains. I find the biggest culprits to be cigarettes, coffee, tea, wine, and berries. When having any of these items I suggest brushing right after with soap and water to prevent stains from building up. I find these methods to be a simple and efficient way to keep your dentures clean.
Professional Denture Cleaning: In spite of all your efforts there still may be some stains that you cannot remove. We suggest returning to the office once a year. At this appointment we will professionally clean and polish your dentures. Removing the stains you can’t and restoring the lost shine. At this appointment we will also inspect your mouth and dentures to make sure everything is healthy and working properly.
If you employ these steps your denture is sure to look it’s best and last it’s longest.