Congratulations on your new denture! If it’s the first time you’ve ever worn either a partial or full denture, you’re probably adjusting to your new smile and the various sensations that come with wearing an oral appliance. Though your mouth may feel a little tender the first few days after getting a new denture and pronouncing certain words may initially have your tongue all tied up, rest assured in knowing that dentures are custom designed to provide superior comfort and function. You’ll get used to them in a jiffy, and soon you’ll be enjoying meals and smiling with confidence. We’ve put together our top tips for getting used to a denture so that you get the most from your new smile.
Persevere – Comfort Level Increases
Getting used to your new denture can compare to a patient adjusting to a new dental bridge where there was once a missing tooth or length being added to teeth that have been shortened by years of grinding. The initial feeling is that you have something incredibly over-sized in your mouth – causing your salivary glands to work overtime and presenting some challenges when it comes to speaking. These minor annoyances don’t last more than a week or so, as oral tissues adjust to the denture and your tongue gets used to having less room to manoeuvre. It’s impressive how quickly the human body can adapt to physical changes, and wearing a denture is something that becomes easier and more comfortable with time – especially if you follow your denturists instructions in the first few weeks.
It is normal in the first few weeks of denture wear to experience some sore spots. Gums are getting used to their new task of supporting a denture instead of individual teeth – so don’t get despondent if your gums are tender initially. We don’t recommend ignoring a sore spot, as continual irritation of tissue can prevent you from being able to wear your denture. Always let your denturist know if you are dealing with ongoing discomfort.
We know this tip may sound crazy, but you’d be amazed at how quickly your speech will feel normal and sound great if you make a concerted effort to speak when you first get your new denture. Speaking may feel like torture because you’ve now got teeth where you once had none, and you may be salivating more than normal as your mouth gets used to the denture – this is all normal. Though it may seem and feel uncomfortable, don’t stop talking! The sooner you get used to your new denture, the better your speech will be.
Enjoying Food and Mealtimes
If you’ve been without teeth for some time, the restored ability to chew food and enjoy meals that you may have been avoiding is going to seem like a treat. Wearing your new denture to eat with confidence doesn’t happen overnight, but you should be enjoying a normal diet within a few weeks. Go easy on your tender gum tissue and stick to soft foods in the first few weeks – eating a steak may be at the top of your list, but hold-off until your gums and denture feel comfortable. Taking small bites and chewing gently will help you get used to the feel of your denture and learn how to distribute pressure evenly to maximize chewing efficacy. Dentures don’t respond the same way as natural teeth when biting into food like apples and corn on the cob, but with a little practice, you’ll be eating all your favourite foods in no time!