If you have lost one or more teeth due to dental disease or injury, dentures may be the best solution to replace missing teeth. Dentures enable you to chew, eat, speak, and smile with confidence. However, dentures also have their own unique set of challenges. At some point during the life of your dentures, you may face problems such as dentures cutting into your gums, denture sore spots, and dentures that rub your gums.
Let’s discuss some common denture problems and denture pain relief methods.
Causes of Denture Sore Spots and Gum Pain
Denture sore spots, dentures cutting into gums, and gum pain related to dentures can be categorized into several factors. Some of these include:
1. Ill-Fitting Dentures
The mouth naturally changes shape as it heals, causing your dentures to no longer fit evenly and uniformly against the tissue in your mouth. Dentures that don’t fit well will rub your soft tissue, resulting in raw and scratched skin on the gums and on the roof or floor of your mouth. Don’t ignore the problem. Seek help from your dental professional as soon as possible to avoid infection.
As a denture wearer, you must properly clean and maintain your dentures daily. Not doing so can result in a bacterial buildup that causes the formation of yeast under your dentures. This leads to painful sores and a condition known as Denture Sore Mouth. With natural teeth, bacteria buildup forms plaque at the gumline. For denture wearers, bacteria can cause tissue inflammation in all of the areas that are covered by the dentures.
3. Bone Resorption
A typical sign of bone resorption is sharp pain, especially in the area where your canine teeth were removed, during biting or chewing. Dentures that rub your gums are an indication that the shape of your gums has changed and the denture no longer fits properly. Continued wear of an ill-fitting denture can lead to additional bone resorption, making it uncomfortable to chew. Excess pressure from dentures while chewing can sometimes press on sensitive nerves located in the jaws creating localized numbness upon biting.
4. Chips and Cracks
Sometimes chips, breakage, pitting, or cracks appear in the denture due to an accident or general wear and tear. Because dentures typically have an average 5-to-7-year lifespan, chips and cracks are more likely to develop as the dentures age. These can keep your dentures from functioning properly. Even if your dentures work perfectly, chips and cracks create irregular surfaces that allow plaque and stains to accumulate. When you notice wear or flaws developing, contact your dentist or denturist to have your dentures repaired. This will prevent further damage to your denture and protect your oral health.
When you first start wearing dentures, it is normal to experience mild soreness for the first few weeks. This is because your mouth needs time to adapt to wearing a foreign object. However, if the soreness does not resolve within a short period of time or you experience real pain or discomfort that persists or worsens significantly, it is time to contact your dentist or denturist for an adjustment. It is amazing how much better you will feel afterward. Minor adjustments can be life-altering and change your perspective on wearing dentures.
What can you do for denture pain relief?
Problems like dentures cutting into gums, denture sore spots, and dentures rubbing the gums should be addressed right away to prevent them from intensifying. Knowing how to get rid of denture sores is the first step in reducing the pain. Here are some methods for denture pain relief and preventing denture problems:
- Get Help from a Professional. If you are dealing with uneven denture pressure, jaw soreness, or other related discomforts, contact your denturist or dentist. Continuing to wear dentures that cause discomfort can actually accelerate bone resorption, making it more difficult to wear dentures in the future.
- Adjustment. With time, your mouth changes. Your dentures will certainly face wear and tear. Both of these conditions lead to dentures not fitting properly, dentures rubbing the gums, or denture sores. For relief, have your dentures adjusted by your dental professional.
- Relining. Your dentures may need to be relined if a simple adjustment does not ensure a proper fit. A denture reline is the process of selectively adding new acrylic material to the inside of your denture in order for it to fit comfortably and uniformly once again. Your dentist or denturist will advise you if this procedure is necessary to improve the fit of your dentures.
- Denture Cleaning. Remove your dentures before sleeping to let your gum tissue rest and allow chewing muscles to relax. Soak your dentures overnight in cool water or a commercial denture cleaning solution to loosen bacteria and lingering food particles. Never use hot water to clean dentures as it can deform and damage them. Instead, clean your dentures using a denture brush and liquid soap or a paste made especially for cleaning dentures every morning. Cleaning dentures with toothpaste made for natural teeth, whitening pastes, or bleaching products can scratch and damage dentures, making them look stained and yellowed while shortening their lifespan.
- Oral Health. Brush your gums every day to maintain oral health and remove any food particles and bacteria. Full denture wearers should also soak a washcloth in lukewarm water, wrap it around their fingers, and massage their gums with the moistened cloth. Partial denture wearers need to brush and floss their natural teeth twice daily. Partials only function as intended if they are supported by strong, healthy natural teeth.
Time to Get New Dentures
Never ignore denture sores, dentures that cut into gums, or denture-related pain. Ignoring these signs can intensify your oral health problems and make your life miserable. If the denture pain relief methods discussed in this article don’t help or if your dentures are beyond repair, it’s time for new dentures. European Denture Center offers state-of-the-art digital dentures that fit comfortably and precisely upon delivery, eliminating the need for numerous adjustments.
Contact our expert denturists if you have questions about how to resolve denture sores or improve the fit of your denture. An appointment with European Denture Center’s caring professionals is only a phone call or click away!