Dentures have been used for centuries by people with missing teeth. George Washington, one of the most famous presidents of USA, was a well-known wearer of dentures made from bone, hippopotamus ivory, human teeth, brass screws, and even gold metal wire!
Unfortunately, thanks to cartoons and movies, dentures have been the target of ridicule for so long that they have a rather... embarrassing reputation, let’s just say. Mention “dentures” and one imagines some poor old woman’s dentures flying across the room to hit some unfortunate soul’s head after a hard sneeze. Or, the poor woman bending over to eat and, oops, her dentures slip out to fall onto the table while the people around her gasp in horror.
Actually, dentures are not at all the easy punch lines that popular media portray them to be. In fact, for many people who have to live life with their teeth missing, dentures are a great means to help them eat, speak and smile as normally as possible while retaining a healthy sense of confidence.
What are dentures like today?
Dentures are far more durable these days, and they resemble real teeth more closely than before. With proper adhesive, there are fewer risks of dentures falling out to embarrass the wearer. The adhesive also avoids food particles from slipping in between your gums and the dentures, thus making dentures more comfortable to wear.
First time denture users may need some time to get used to them, during which they may have some problems pronouncing certain words. However, they would speak normally once they have become more used to wearing their dentures.
As long as the dentures fit the person well, there should be no changes to the denture user’s appearance.
Are dentures durable?
Yes, although they still need proper care, such as:
Rinse your dentures before brushing them.
Use a toothbrush with soft bristles to clean the surfaces of the dentures.
To remove bacteria that can cause bad smells, use a non-abrasive cleanser. You can also use cleansers with a whitening formula to keep the dentures pristine-looking.
When applying denture adhesives, follow the instructions on the package.
When you are not wearing your dentures, keep them in water and place them in a safe place.
Clean your gums, tongue, inside of your cheeks and the roof of your mouth thoroughly to reduce risk of irritation and bad breath.
American Dental Association. Available at www.mouthhealthy.org
WebMD. Available at www.webmd.com