Dentures require the same care and cleaning as natural teeth. It is important to brush your dentures regularly to prevent gum disease and other oral health problems. But what denture brushes are the best? In this article, we review different types of toothbrushes to help you make the choice.
The Basics: How To Clean Dentures Daily
Dentures are naturally looking replacements for lost teeth. They can help you chew and speak better, improve your smile, and build your self-confidence.
Even though removable teeth are false, you still need to clean them regularly. If you care for your dentures properly, they can last for 7-10 years. At the same time, failure to keep your dentures clean could have serious consequences for your oral health, causing bad breath, gum disease, bacterial infections, and loss of the remaining teeth.
Cleaning your dentures involves more than just brushing. Here are the steps you need to follow to keep your dentures in good shape:
Brush your dentures regularly
You should brush your dentures at least once or twice a day using a soft-bristled toothbrush and warm water or non-abrasive denture cleanser. Place a towel on the counter or in the sink to ensure that the dentures don’t break if you drop them. Avoid bending the plastic or the clasps while brushing.
It is important not to use toothpaste to brush dentures, as it can damage their surface. Whitening toothpaste is not suitable for dentures as it won’t improve the color of artificial teeth.
Rinse your dentures
It is recommended to rinse your dentures thoroughly after every meal or snack to help eliminate any leftover food and prevent the growth of bacteria. Rinsing is especially important if you’re using denture-soaking tablets, since these solutions can contain harmful chemicals that cause vomiting, pain, or burns if swallowed.
Soak your dentures daily
You should soak your dentures in cold or warm water or a mild denture-soaking solution for 6-8 hours each day, preferably overnight. Avoid soaking dentures in hot water, as heat can change the shape of the appliance. Bleaching your dentures can damage the acrylic material.
If you won’t be wearing the dentures right away after cleaning them, place them in a container with cool water or a denture-cleansing solution. Dentures must not dry out, or they can permanently lose their shape, become brittle, and crack or break.
Other things to keep in mind
- Dentures are fragile and can break easily. It is important to handle them with care and to take your time when brushing them.
- In addition to properly brushing your dentures, make sure to take care of your tongue, gums, and the roof of your mouth. You should brush your gums and tongue with toothpaste at least two times a day, and floss your remaining teeth, to keep them clean and avoid inflammation due to the use of dentures.
- Rinse your mouth out when you wake up, between meals, and before bedtime. You can either remove dentures before using mouthwash or use a special mouthwash designed for denture wearers.
- Take out your dentures at night to minimize the chance of developing an infection like denture stomatitis.
- Schedule regular six-months dental checkups to have your dentures checked and professionally cleaned with ultrasonic cleansers. Your dentist will also examine your mouth to make sure it’s healthy.
- See your dentist if your dentures become loose, as this can lead to irritation and infection. If you develop mouth sores, this may also mean that your dentures don’t fit properly. You may also want to consult your dentist for denture cleaning recommendations.
There are several different toothbrush types on the market. Below, we explain the pros and cons of each of them.
Because dentures are delicate and can be easily damaged, you should ideally use a regular or denture soft-bristled toothbrush to clean them and keep them free from stains. These toothbrushes are much more gentle than electric ones.
A denture brush is made especially for cleaning dentures. It is slightly bigger than a regular toothbrush and typically has:
- Two different brush heads
- Bristles designed to fit the shape of a denture
- An ergonomically designed handle.
The bristles on these types of brushes are firm enough to allow for proper cleaning around clips and crevasses where bacteria may easily form.
Although brushes made especially for dentures are ideal for keeping them clean, you can also use a regular soft bristle brush as long as it is approved by your dentist.
Electric toothbrushes are not recommended for cleaning dentures. Even though they may have soft bristles, they can still be damaging to your dentures.
However, if you wear partial dentures, then an electric toothbrush may be a good option. Electric toothbrushes are much more efficient in cleaning natural teeth than manual ones. Scientists found that people who use an electric toothbrush have healthier gums and fewer instances of tooth decay.
To use an electric toothbrush, remove the dentures and use the tip of the toothbrush head to clean them. The toothbrush should be switched off while cleaning dentures. With dentures still removed, turn on the toothbrush to brush your remaining teeth.
Denture Brushes: The Benefits
Denture brushes are designed specifically for cleaning dentures and have many advantages compared to regular toothbrushes.
Two brush heads for efficient cleaning
Unlike a regular toothbrush, a denture brush has two brush heads to help clean out all the areas where bacteria might collect. The flat head is appropriate for smooth, convex surfaces, while you should use the tapered one to clean the denture’s clips and crevasses.
Because dentures are softer than normal teeth, they also scratch more easily. Denture brushes have soft bristles that will effectively clean your dentures without causing any damage, scratches, or abrasions.
Denture brushes are designed to be easier to grip and control. They are equipped with ergonomic handles that are easy to use for the elderly and people with limited dexterity.