Denture Adjustments
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Q. Why do new dentures need adjustments?
A. Adjustments are an important part of the denture process. The materials used to make dentures have been developed to be very stable and accurate. However, slight changes in these materials (during the denture making process) can only be corrected after the denture is being worn. Certain areas of the mouth can handle the pressure of the denture base. Some areas can’t. These areas can only be determined after the denture is worn. This adjustment process should be included with the cost of the new dentures (for several months) and should not be done by the patient with sandpaper and/or a jackknife.

Q. Why do old dentures need adjustments?
A. A person’s mouth changes over the years and the denture may no longer fit properly. This may be corrected by an adjustment or a reline. A relined denture may in turn need adjustments for the same reason a new denture needs adjustments. An improper bite may be causing pressure in a certain area of the jaw. A reline may not solve this problem.

A persistent sore spot is of
serious concern: call your dentist.

Q. Should dentures be taken out at night?
Even cowboys take their boots off at night. Some studies have shown that taking your dentures out at night (especially the lower) helps prevent the loss of jaw structure. A persistent sore spot is of serious concern: call your dentist.

Q. Why are dentures expensive?
Relatively speaking, dentures are often quite a bargain! It is not unusual for a person to get 10 years of service from a denture. Considering what they are put through day after day, that’s amazing. One could think of many things that cost more but don’t last as long or serve such a vital service. A denture is a custom made, one of- a-kind item. In this day and age, few things compare to that. Dentures are a replacement for a living body part (much like an artificial limb or other device) and require a considerable amount of time and skill for proper fabrication and service.

Q. How long should dentures last?
This varies a great deal from person to person. I have patients with 30 year old dentures that are still working just fine! I have seen patients who “chew through” dentures every five years. Some studies have found 10 years of usage to be about average. However, most dental insurance plans feel that 5 years is an acceptable interval of replacement.

Q. Does a dry mouth cause problems with dentures?
Yes. Many people who have a dry mouth due to hormone changes or other conditions experience problems with their dentures. “Artificial saliva” can be prescribed to help overcome these problems.

Q. What causes excess saliva with dentures?
In many cases, it is due to the initial reaction of your body to the new denture. First time denture wearers experience this the most. The mouth’s reflex reaction to something foreign is to salivate. This condition will subside as the denture is worn.

Q. Which is better - porcelain or plastic teeth?
Some scientific studies have shown that plastic teeth seem to be “kinder” to the underlying gums. This may help prevent loss of bone structure. Plastic teeth are now as color stable as porcelain teeth.  

Q. Can I be allergic to my dentures?
Yes, but this doesn’t happen very often. An allergist can do a simple test to determine if an allergy to denture acrylic exists. If so, there are alternatives to conventional denture plastics that can be used. Again, see a dentist if any allergic condition persists.

Q. What are Implants?
Implants are best described as artificial tooth roots placed in the jaw. These artificial roots can be used to help support an overdenture. Implants may be helpful to the patient who has had difficulty using a denture due to lack of bone support. If you are interested in Implants, consult with a dentist.

Q. Are dentures as good as natural teeth?
There is no doubt that the best teeth are the ones provided by the Lord above as standard equipment. They are designed to last a lifetime. Unfortunately, accident or disease may cause the loss of these natural teeth and the need for dentures.

Questions and Answers