This article highlights some of the challenges of dentures in lifespan, common denture issues, routine maintenance, differences between repair and replacement, and what to look out for in taking care of your dentures.
Why Dentures Don’t Last
Think of how often we use our teeth and/or dentures. They go through a lot of wear-and-tear. We eat on average 3 meals a day, resulting in 1095 meals a year, plus snacks.
As strong and durable as dentures are, eventually, they will need a replacement. They’re no different than teeth. As well as one takes care of them, eventually, deterioration occurs.
This is normal. Denture clinics and denturists will equip you with what you need to ensure you receive a replacement.
Also, it bears keeping in mind that the exact lifespan of dentures varies according to denture design. The material used to make the dentures – such as acrylic or composite material – can also affect lifespan.
Comparing Denture Types
The average lifespan of conventional full dentures is 7-10 years, while partial dentures last a maximum of 10-12 years.
Compare this to implant-supported dentures. When properly cared for, this type of denture can last up to 20 years and longer. Though the upfront cost of implant dentures is above-average, quality makes all the difference. In the long-term, considering repairs and replacements of conventional dentures, an argument can be made that implant dentures are cheaper and certainly more convenient.
The general rule is to have your dentures inspected at the 3, 5, 7 and 10-year mark to ensure they are functioning as intended.
Do Loose Dentures Need A Replacement?
Don’t think you need replacement dentures if yours are loose. It is very likely you don’t!
Denture fit changes over the years. The bone structure in your mouth is constantly changing, resulting in difficulties in eating and speaking with dentures in.
The fix for this issue is simple – a denture relining. This should be done every 2 years on average. Consider relining as a part of your maintenance schedule. If you stick with it, your dentures can stay in tip-top shape for a long time to come.
Signs You Need A Denture Replacement
Pain. Dentures that are causing pain or sores doesn’t necessarily mean they require a replacement. They may just need to have their fit adjusted. That said, if you are experiencing pain in your mouth, neck, shoulders, or upper back, it could relate to dentures which are not properly fitted.
Broken base. A broken denture base necessitates an automatic replacement. Your dentures don’t work without a solid base. Any damage here will make your dentures unusable.
Broken teeth. Just because a tooth breaks or chips does not mean you need to replace your dentures. Sometimes, a repair suffices. That said, do not repair broken or chipped teeth at home. Doing so has the potential to lead to serious oral health trouble. Always have it assessed by a denturist.
Stained dentures. Tiny cracks or fractures in dentures occur over time, causing bacteria to hide in these areas. This will mean your dentures looking less than ideal. If not cleaned, you’re setting the field for an infection. Eventually, these cracks and fractures will necessitate a full replacement.
Is There Any Way to Avoid Replacing Dentures?
The only way to avoid a denture replacement is to have issues addressed before they become something bigger.
Also, stick with and have all routine denture appointments. It is key that a denturist monitor your bite, evaluates the quality of your dentures, and that any problems are caught before they worsen.
Maintain your dentures daily through the recommended steps provided by your denturist. Depending on the type of dentures you have, the details of daily and nightly care routines will differ.
What Happens if You Do Not Replace Your Dentures
If a denturist advises you to replace your dentures and you choose not to, expect any existing issues to worsen.
If your dentures aren’t fitting correctly, this will only get worse. Pressure will be put on areas, creating sores and pain. Any existing sores could get infected or worsen. Your abilities to chew, speak, and eat will be affected. Your bite will be impacted.
Also, if there’s an underlying cause as to why your dentures do not fit or are requiring a replacement – such as bone loss – sticking with your existing dentures won’t address it. Comparatively, having something like implant-supported dentures may be able to.
Dentures are a cost-effective way to replace missing teeth and restore your smile. To achieve those long-term benefits, however, a lot has to come together. To learn more about dentures, including full, partial, implant dentures, suction dentures, and more, schedule a consultation with Apple Denture Clinic. An experienced denturist will be happy to sit down with you and explain what options may be available that match your unique situation.