Do you use a toothbrush to clean your dentures?
By 2050 there are expected to be two billion people aged 60 or older. This is more than double today’s figure. The older you are, the more likely you are to have lost all, or nearly all, your natural teeth. This is why, at Drayton Dental Care near Norwich, we recall you every 6 to 12 months, because your natural teeth are precious. A global taskforce of academic experts brought together by the Oral Health Foundation has announced new guidelines to address the needs of an ageing population worldwide and tackle the wealth of inconsistent and contradictory advice on the best care of dentures. Dr Nigel Carter OBE, Chief Executive of the Oral Health Foundation believes the new guidelines will help end confusion about how dentures should be looked after. Dr Carter says: “We have found that people with dentures do not know how they should be cleaning them. Our report shows that denture wearers use everything from soap and water to toothpastes, bleaches and commercial products. But with the variety of recommendations available online and from other sources, it is no surprise that people are confused. “Incorrect denture care can pose a real threat to both the oral health and general health of denture wearers. We hope these new recommendations can reassure people about the best way to look after their dentures.” The risks associated with poor denture care are wide-ranging and include inflammation of the mouth, staining, changes in taste and bad breath. It has also been linked to wider health problems such as pneumonia, particularly in the frail elderly. Denture Care Guidelines 1. Daily cleaning of dentures using mechanical action – brushing with a toothbrush or denture brush and an effective, non-abrasive denture cleanser (no dentifrice).
2. Daily soaking in a denture-cleansing solution – this seems to deliver extra chemical breakdown of the remaining plaque and some level of disinfection of the denture. Denture-cleansing solutions should only be used outside the mouth, and denture wearers should strictly follow the manufacturers’ guidelines.
3. Denture wearers should not keep their dentures in the mouth overnight, unless there are specific reasons for keeping them in. This guideline is even more important for people at a higher risk of developing stomatitis and for frail or institutionalised older people. Soaking in a denture cleanser solution after mechanical cleaning seems to be beneficial for preventing denture stomatitis and the potential risk of pneumonia.
4. All patients who wear removable dentures should be enrolled into a regular dental recall and maintenance programme. If you would like more information, please contact us at Drayton Dental Care in School Road. We look forward to hearing from you.