If you’ve been living with dentures for some time, you may appreciate the many benefits these prosthetics provide. You might also recognize, though, that they can become a bit cumbersome to deal with, especially when it comes to fitting comfortably. Over time, your facial shape can change, causing your teeth to no longer remain in place as they should. This may cause you to ask the question, “Can ill-fitting dentures be life-threatening?” To find out the answer, keep reading to learn which signs can indicate it is time to make the switch.
Why Do Dentures No Longer Fit Properly Over Time?
Dentures are not made to last forever. As temporary prosthetics, they can succumb to daily wear and tear. But it’s not just chips, scratches, or even minor staining that can be the problem. Their improper fit can also cause issues.
The reason this happens is that your jawbone shrinks over time. When losing teeth, the roots are no longer present to provide continuous stimulation to your jawbone. As a result, atrophy occurs, which makes it impossible for your dentures to feel comfortable inside your mouth. As your oral and facial structures change, so will your dentures.
Can a Poor Denture Fit Cause Life-Threatening Problems?
It is possible that once you notice that your dentures no longer fit as they should, they can create more serious issues throughout your mouth and body. At one time, researchers found that while certain bad habits such as smoking or even excessive alcohol consumption can harbor bad bacteria beneath the gumline, increasing the risk of oral cancer, it was only a theory.
However, more recent research, with the help of meta-analysis, found that individuals living with ill-fitting dentures saw a nearly 300% increase in the possibility of developing oral cancer.
As a rapidly progressing disease, it can become harder to treat and even cure if not found in its earliest stages. Without timely treatment, it can prove fatal.
Because dentures only rest on top of the gums, it is easy for bacteria and other harmful particles to spread beneath the prosthetic and begin to infect the soft oral tissues. If proper oral hygiene is not practiced at home, and regular dental checkups and teeth cleanings are not performed, infection can form, effectively weakening the body’s immune system.
Should oral cancer develop and be left undetected, the chances of survival significantly decrease over time.
What Can a Dentist Do to Help?
When it comes to addressing your ill-fitting dentures, it’s important that you see your dentist the moment you realize there is a problem. Should you feel tenderness, see oral sores forming, or notice that your teeth continually slip or fall out, it’s time to inquire about a new set.
There is also the option of switching from traditional dentures to those that are held in place by dental implants. You and your dentist can discuss your eligibility and how best to move forward should you opt for a more permanent tooth replacement solution.
Dentures can be a beneficial and life-changing option for anyone with missing teeth, but good oral hygiene and regular checkups with a dentist are also essential to ensure proper fit, better oral health, and a longer-lasting smile.
About Grand Dental – Lockport
At Grand Dental – Lockport, we aim to help our patients maintain healthier smiles. When a patient complains that their dentures no longer fit as they should, we can discuss options of relinement, replacement, or making the switch to implant dentures. Visit our website or call (815) 240-8068 to learn how we can help.