You’re not supposed to lose your teeth. Under ideal circumstances, you keep them for a lifetime. Unfortunately, life’s not ideal, and people lose teeth. In fact, a lot of people lose teeth: 178 million Americans are missing at least one tooth. And some people lose more than one; 40 million are missing all of them.
This is where dentures come in. And if you need to a few gaps with dentures, you’re in luck. They’re better and more realistic than ever. You just need to follow a couple of tips to make the transition smooth and seamless.
Dr. Nataly Vilderman can fit you for the perfect set of dentures to make your smile bright and confident. Whether you’re missing just one tooth, a row of teeth, or a whole mouthful, she treats you with expertise and care so you can eat, chew, talk, and laugh without worry. Here’s what you need to know about getting used to dentures.
You may have lost teeth because of an accident or injury, or you may have had them removed due to disease or decay. Whatever the reason, your mouth has undergone some trauma.
So while you’re healing, we fit you with some temporary dentures that cover your gaps right away and ease you into the experience. With these initial dentures, you can eat and speak and not worry about unsightly gaps while we’re preparing your custom-fitted dentures.
During this time, your gums may be a little sensitive, which means you may have some discomfort at first. But it doesn’t take long to get used to your new appliance. If you practice patience, you can be smiling, chewing, and speaking with confidence again soon. And when we outfit with your regular dentures, you’ll be ready.
A tried and true trick of speech therapists is to tackle speech issues like stuttering with singing. It turns out that the same holds true for getting used to dentures.
Some people find speaking with new dentures a little awkward, and singing seems to be a good way to practice keeping them in your mouth. By singing in your car, in your shower, or with your family and friends, speech comes more easily.
When you get your new dentures, it’s best to start off slowly with soft foods until you get used to having the appliance in your mouth. For instance, soup, mashed potatoes, and pasta are good ideas; steak with corn-on-the-cob are not. Once you’re accustomed to chewing and swallowing with dentures, you can slowly add firmer and crunchier foods to your diet.
As you progress toward chewier foods, make sure to take smaller bites and chew on both sides of your mouth so you distribute pressure evenly. It isn’t long before you can enjoy all of your favorite foods again.
Your sensory nerves let you know when your coffee is too hot or your ice cream is too cold, but your new dentures have no nerves to warn you about such things. Part of getting used to your dentures is making sure to check the temperature of your food and drinks before you take a bite or sip. Extreme temperatures can damage your dentures.
Like your natural teeth, it’s important to keep your dentures clean. If you have complete dentures, remove them every night and use special cleansers to clean away any bacteria and debris. With your dentures removed for cleaning, gently brush your gums.
If you have partial dentures, they’re likely attached to your natural teeth, so you need to care for them as you do your existing teeth. Brush, floss, and rinse every day to preserve the health of your anchor teeth and keep your prosthetic and natural teeth sparkling.
If you have a new set of dentures and have questions about how to live with them, or if you’re planning to get dentures and are looking for a specialist who can guide you through the process from beginning to end, call Dr. Vilderman or book an appointment online today.