Full dentures have an average life span of five to 10 years. The fit of your dentures will change over time as your body reabsorbs the alveolar bone, the bony structure that supports your teeth. Your dentist can make adjustments and repairs in between complete replacements.
If your dentures get loose, your dentist can add a layer of material to the underside of the base so they fit better to your mouth. This is called relining. Your dentist can also make a new base. If the chewing surfaces become worn, your dentist can also attach new teeth to the existing base.
You can keep your dentures looking good and fitting well for a long time by taking proper care of them. Here are some tips that will help:
- Wash your dentures in cold or warm water. Avoid hot water.
- Handle your dentures carefully. If you drop them on a hard surface, they can break. Try to hold them over a basin of water or a soft towel.
- Wash your dentures daily with denture cleanser, hand soap, or mild dish liquid. Avoid abrasive cleaners.
- Use a special denture brush or hard toothbrush to clean your dentures. Clean all denture surfaces and scrub thoroughly.
- After the adjustment phase, take your dentures out when you sleep to relieve pressure on your gums. If you cannot be without your dentures overnight, take them out for at least a couple of hours every day.
- Don’t let your dentures dry out. Soak them in a cleaning solution or water when they’re not in your mouth.
- Continue to brush your mouth—including your gums, palate, and tongue—with a soft bristled toothbrush every morning before you insert your dentures.
If you have constant discomfort, staining, bad odor, color changes or tartar deposits, call your dentist. And don’t try to adjust or repair your dentures on your own. Your dentist can help. Learn more about dentures and how to care for them.