For those requiring full-arch teeth replacement, dentures are a great option. Used in the field of dentistry for decades, these prostheses are efficient and affordable.
However, traditional dentures will need to be replaced at some point. Today, our Kansas City, MO dental team explores common signs that your dentures need replacement, and how you can properly maintain them in the meantime.
The Lifespan of Dentures: What to Expect
Generally speaking, dentures last about seven to 10 years on average. Due to changes in the orofacial structures and the type of dental materials used, replacement is a normal part of wearing dentures.
In order to maintain your prosthesis for as long as possible, occasional relines will be necessary to keep your denture secure and fitting properly.
There are several warning signs that may indicate denture replacement is necessary. We will explore these in detail in the sections below.
Difficulty Eating or Speaking
When your dentures were first crafted, they were custom made to fit your unique dental anatomy at that time.
Following tooth loss, bone atrophy is a normal occurrence. This causes the jawbone to shrink gradually over time. Therefore, you may notice that your dentures are not fitting as well as they once were.
Ill-fitting dentures can lead to a host of problems, including shifting and slipping when eating or speaking. If these normal routines are becoming challenging for you, it could be time to replace your dentures.
Sore Spots or Lesions
If your dentures begin to shift, the resulting friction can rub sore spots or lesions on your gum tissue. This is not only painful, but it keeps many patients from wearing their denture.
Prolonged periods of going without your denture can result in significant changes to your oral anatomy. So much, in fact, that your prosthesis may not fit properly when you try it in.
Chronic Pain or Discomfort
Dentures do way more than simply replace teeth. When your prosthesis was first fabricated, your dentist made sure that your bite and your jaw joints were balanced.
If the bite is too open or closed, it can result in TMJ disorder. This condition can cause chronic jaw pain, headaches, earaches, tinnitus, neck pain, back pain, or shoulder pain.
Once dentures have worn down, it can have a negative impact on your bite. As a result, your jaw muscles work overtime to compensate for the changes. If you are experiencing symptoms of TMJ disorder or other bite-related issues, it may be time to replace your dentures.
When dentures are new and in good shape, they are typically quite easy to keep clean. However, as time goes on, you may notice that you are trapping more food inside the prosthesis. This could be an indication that the seal between the denture and your gums is not as tight as it once was.
In addition, worn dentures can often develop small cracks or fractures. When this occurs, bacteria can hide in these crevices. This could lead to infections, such as thrush. If you notice a bad taste or bad odor, or if your dentures are particularly difficult to keep clean, it could be time to replace them.
Contact Us for More Information
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, schedule a consultation right away so that we can assess your denture and make a treatment recommendation. Call us at (816) 842-8585 or contact us online anytime.