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Protecting Your Gums When You Have Your Dentures Out

Posted on 4/23/2017 by Sergio Ortegon
A pair of dentures floating inside of a glass jar.
Dentures are a common dental appliance used to replace missing teeth. Both full and partial dentures are false teeth set in a gum colored base that is supported by your gums.

These particular appliances are meant to be removed every night for cleaning, and to give your gums a break. Just because you don't have teeth, though, doesn't mean that you are immune to gum disease. But there are things you can do to protect your gums while your dentures are out.

What is Gum Disease?

Gum disease in a bacterial infection of the gums. When it first strikes, it is barely noticeable, only causing some inflammation and redness of the gum tissue. You may experience some bleeding while brushing or flossing, but that bleeding is often attributed to being too vigorous with your tools.

As it progresses, the bacteria sneak under the gum tissue to wreak havoc on teeth and bone, eventually causing tooth loss.
If you are already missing all of your teeth, gum disease can still cause a significant amount of damage, due to your dentures becoming ill-fitting.

The Importance of Removing Dentures

Removing your dentures every night is an important step to keeping your gums healthy. The tissue, and the bone underneath, need a break. Otherwise, your gums get irritated.

The tissues can become inflamed, causing your dentures to fit poorly, leading to denture sores (which can then lead to infection) and accelerated bone loss. Leaving them in also creates the warm, dark environment bacteria crave in order to thrive.

Care for Your Gums
After you remove and clean your dentures for the evening, your gums need some attention as well. You should brush them with a soft bristled toothbrush, or use a washcloth to clean them.

You should also make sure to brush the other areas of your mouth (your tongue, cheeks and roof of your mouth) to get rid of any lingering food particles and bacteria that can otherwise make itself at home under your dentures the next morning. Antibacterial mouthwash should also be used. If you still have some remaining natural teeth, you should brush and floss your teeth as usual.

Taking proper care of your gums while your dentures are out is important to your overall oral health. If you notice any fit changes, anything unusual, or have any questions about proper oral care, be sure to contact our office.

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•  Board Certified Prosthodontist
•  Maxillofacial Prosthodontist
•  Assistant Clinical Professor
•  17 Years of Clinical Experience

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dedicated to aesthetic, reconstructive, and dental implant dentistry. It is one of only nine dental specialties recognized by the American Dental Association (ADA). Different from a Periodontist, of ~150,000 dentists nationwide, only 2%, are Prosthodontists. > Read more

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