News from ProDentures
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Although millions of people rely on replacement dentures to regain the functionality of their mouth, the American College of Prosthodontists strongly recommends patients to take out their partial dentures before they sleep. Dental professionals say that doing so will give the gums and bone a much needed break from the pressure of supporting dentures throughout the day. As any experienced dentist will tell you, however, not wearing dentures at night has more hygienic and health benefits than you might think.
Here are some good reasons to think twice about leaving your dentures on at bedtime…
It is normal for salivary flow to be reduced while you sleep, causing your mouth to feel a little dry. Wearing dentures at night further inhibits the flow of saliva in your mouth, leading to a condition referred to as stomatitis (inflammation of mouth and lips).
Denture-related stomatitis affects the gum tissue underneath, like the palate, causing it to take on a reddened appearance. Once this inflammation sets in, you are more likely to get an infection caused by yeast and other types of bacteria. From there, you might also be at risk of developing cheilitis or cracking around the corners of the mouth, which may then also be infected by the same bacteria.
Pneumonia in the Elderly
Researchers in Japan have found a connection between wearing dentures during sleep and risk for pneumonia. The study was conducted over a period of three years and involved 524 randomly selected seniors with an average age of 87.8.
Empirical evidence suggested that denture wearing at night is not only associated with oral inflammation and bacteria growth, but with the potential to develop pneumonia as well.
As it turns out, wearing dentures 24 hours a day, without practicing proper oral hygiene, makes your mouth more susceptible to bacteria that can then be inhaled into the lungs. Combined with the difficulty of swallowing saliva with dentures on, older folks are more susceptible to contracting pneumonia and other chest infections.
Accelerated Bone Resorption
Bone loss is a common problem as one gets older, and wearing dentures the entire day may further accelerate the rate of resorption. The pressure of constantly wearing dentures wears down the gums and the bone beneath becomes more brittle.
As a result, the jaw loses its shape, causing your dentures to not fit properly. It can also alter your physical appearance, facial bone structure, and facial expressions. Resorption might also increase the likelihood of embarrassing slippages, and could even limit the foods you can eat.
Dentures or partial dentures are effective at restoring your smile only if you use and maintain them according to your dentist’s instructions.
The next time you visit us at one of the ProDentures offices, don’t hesitate to ask us about other ways to maintain good oral health.
Study Discourages Sleep With Dentures, Colgate.com
Sleeping in Dentures, DearDoctor.com