INSTRUCTIONS TO DENTURE PATIENTS
A. WHAT TO EXPECT FROM YOUR NEW DENTURES
You must learn to manipulate your dentures. At first you may look, speak, and eat in a way that you are unaccustomed. But with time, you should adapt very readily. Most patients require about 2 – 3 weeks to learn to work with new dentures. A few patients may require more time. But don’t be discouraged if you take longer than most.
You will find that dentures are not as efficient as your natural teeth when eating. However, having dentures is better than being without teeth. When eating, start with soft foods and take small bites. Avoid biting with the front teeth because it will cause the dentures to become unstable and shift. This can lead to sore gums. It is best to cut your foods into small bites, but if you must “take a bite” use the area around the canine teeth.
Your speech, as mentioned above, may sound strange initially. But with practice, perhaps reading aloud from a book or newspaper, you should be able to speak clearly in a few days.
You must return to your denturist/dentist for follow up appointments after the dentures have been inserted. In most instances, it is necessary to make minor adjustments to provide a more comfortable fit.
In order for you to wear your dentures successfully, most patients will require adjustments of their attitude and habits.
If soreness develops, that is considered a normal occurrence. Call your denturist/dentist for an appointment to have an adjustment. The irritation will not disappear by itself.
We do not want you to “try and tough it out”. If you are unable to reach your denturist/dentist during holidays, weekends, or after hours, remove the dentures to prevent further trauma to the tissues.
C. YOUR ORAL HEALTH
Nature did not intend for people to wear dentures. You must exercise care with the tissue beneath the dentures. It is recommended to rest the tissues at least eight hours a day. Most patients find it more convenient to leave the dentures out at night.
The tissues that support your dentures are constantly changing. This may result in denture looseness. However, looseness can result from many causes. With time, your dentures will need either refitting or replacement. In any event, you should call your dentist for an appointment.
Annual examinations of the supporting tissue for abnormalities and to assess the function and fit of the denture are important for your dental health.