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Tips to Adjust to New Dentures

Owning a new denture can be daunting at first considering all the factors that come with such an important purchase. From caring for a costly appliance to adjusting to life with it in your mouth, you may feel a bit lost in uncharted waters. Luckily, this feeling is only temporary because within a couple of weeks you will get accustomed to your new dental appliance and develop a manageable routine.

Below are some tips to help make your first few weeks a breeze:

1. Start with soft foods

a. When wearing a new dental appliance, the position and size of the teeth may be different and can cause the jaw to close in an unfamiliar position. This is why it may feel strange to chew certain foods. To re-train your jaw to chew comfortably again, start with soft foods and gradually work your way to harder foods.

b. Food plan example:

i. Day 1 – 14: Mashed potatoes, yogurt, vegetable soup, soft cheeses, applesauce and broth.

ii.Day 15 – 29: Well cooked pasta, baked potatoes, steamed vegetables, tofu, and meat cut into small pieces.

iii.Day 30 and on: Corn on the cob, any protein, apples, carrots, and popcorn

2. Be patient

a. It is completely normal to have difficulty speaking at first. In fact, your tongue may be confused with the new size and height of your teeth as well as the new position and thickness of your palate. Take your time when speaking and allow your tongue to familiarize itself with its new environment and re-learn how to say certain sounds. For tips on speaking with a new dental appliance, click here. (Link to blog, “Re-learning How to Speak with a Dental Appliance”)

3. Give yourself a break

a. Most dentists do not recommend wearing your dentures to bed. Remove your dentures at night to give your muscles a break and allow blood to flow under your dentures. Consult your doctor before wearing your dentures to bed.

4. Pay attention to sore spots

a. Allow your mouth 2 –14 days to adjust to your new appliance. During this period, soreness is common and may be alleviated with a warm salt water rinse. If soreness persists, make note of sore spots and return to your dentist.

Sometimes sore spots can be fixed with minor adjustments to your appliance.

Note: do not attempt to adjust your dentures at home.

b. Another reason for sore spots could be due to an unclean appliance. Be sure you are brushing and soaking your dental appliance daily to properly care for your appliance and oral health. Learn more about unclean dental appliances here (Link to hidden dangers blog).

5. Visit your dentist regularly

a. Continue with your regular dental check-ups and avoid skipping a dental cleaning appointment (occurs every 6 months). Regular dental check-ups are necessary to keep track of oral health changes and the condition of your dental appliance.

b. Anytime an adjustment is made to your appliance by your dentist, be sure to repeat the process.

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