If you have dentures, you know that they’re an essential part of everyday life. Without them, you wouldn’t be able to eat or speak as normally throughout the day. Because they play such an important role, it’s important to care for them properly. After all, you want to continue to enjoy the many benefits they provide, right? One key aspect of keeping your dentures in good shape is soaking them overnight. Though you might feel tempted to skip this step, here are 4 reasons why you shouldn’t!
Reason #1: Dentures Are Porous
Although they appear completely smooth to the naked eye, the acrylic surface of your dentures is covered in microscopic openings called pores. These are great places for bacteria to thrive, which spells bad news for your oral health! Even if you have no natural teeth remaining, unhealthy germs can still cause gum disease. Placing your dentures in a glass of water or denture solution keeps these unwanted microbes at bay.
Reason #2: Bacteria Increase As We Age
Unfortunately, as we age the population of bacteria in our mouth increases. They’re infectious organisms and continue to spread over time. Not only that, but as get older we produce less saliva, which is our mouth’s natural antibacterial. That means you’re less able to keep your dentures germ-free without a little extra help. Leaving them in a disinfecting solution while you’re sleeping will kill off unwanted particles.
Reason #3: Rest Your Gums
A long day of speaking around your dentures, and removing then replacing them for meals, can leave your gums feeling sore. Taking them out while you sleep gives your mouth a much-needed reprieve. Your gums can relax without the added pressure, and your tongue and jaw muscles have a chance to relax.
Reason #4: Soaking Effectively Disinfects
Did you know that when you soak your dentures overnight you’re effectively removing over 99.9% of oral bacteria from them? While it’s important to remove them to brush them every evening, that won’t get rid of all the germs that have gathered. You can finish the job by leaving your dentures in a glass of cleanser or room-temperature water. Remember to avoid using hot water which can warp them so that they no longer fit.
Now that you know how to properly care for your dentures at night, they’ll continue to serve you well during the day. You can rest easy knowing that your smile is as healthy and clean as you can manage!
About the Author
Dr. Vikram Chauhan (popularly known as Dr. Vik) completed his undergraduate education at VCU then his Master of Biomedical Sciences from Rutgers University. He then achieved his dental degree from the Tufts University School of Dental Medicine. Since then he has eagerly continued his education in restorative dentistry, making him an expert at rebuilding and repairing smiles. If you have dentures and would like a consultation, you’re welcome to request an appointment on our website or by calling (703) 281-2111.