Missing teeth can take a toll on your oral health and your overall quality of life. When it comes to tooth replacement, dentures are a popular restorative option. Used for decades, this treatment is one of the most affordable and cost-effective options available.
However, although they are durable, dentures will not last for a lifetime. It is important to recognize common warning signs your dentures need to be replaced so that when the time comes, you know what to expect.
Here, our Staten Island, NY dental team explores a few of the most common reasons for denture replacement.
What Is the Average Lifespan of a Denture?
Like most dental restorations, dentures are built for strength and resilience. However, it is important to understand that they simply will not last forever. In fact, the average lifespan of a denture is seven to 10 years. After the initial placement, patients should generally have the prosthesis assessed and relined every two years to maintain proper fit and function.
Your Dentures No Longer Fit Correctly
In many cases, the first sign that something is not quite right is a change in fit. For example, patients may realize their dentures are starting to shift or slip out of place frequently.
This is caused by ongoing changes in the underlying bone structure. When teeth are missing, the supporting bone deteriorates slowly over time. As this happens, the denture may wobble or move, causing difficulties eating or speaking. If you notice these symptoms, consider bringing your denture in for an assessment.
There Are Cracks and Chips on Your Dentures
As dentures age, they can become cracked or chipped. In fact, it is not uncommon for tiny hairline fractures to appear in the surface of the prosthesis. Although these cracks may not affect the aesthetics of the appliance, they can become a breeding ground for oral bacteria. If left untreated, this can eventually lead to gum infections or thrush.
Your Gums Are Sore or Irritated
When your dentures were first crafted, they were fabricated with your unique oral anatomy in mind. As the underlying bone ridge begins to shrink, the fit changes. This can lead to wobbly dentures that can irritate the gums, causing sores or lesions to appear. If you notice sore spots on your gum tissue, your dentures could be the culprit.
You Have Chronic Pain
If you have chronic headaches, earaches, facial nerve pain, or back pain, you may not immediately assume that your dentures are to blame. However, all of these symptoms can develop due to an ill-fitting prosthesis.
For example, dentures keep the bite stable and place the jaw joints in their proper positions. When changes in the underlying bone continue over time, the bite is altered as a result. If you notice this type of chronic pain, be sure to inform your dentist so he or she can assess your denture.
Learn More about Denture Replacement
If you notice any of the warning signs mentioned here, we recommend bringing your denture in so that Dr. Mormino can assess it. In some cases, dentures may only require a simple repair. However, if they must be replaced, we will take all of your specific oral health needs into account. To schedule a consultation, contact us online anytime or call us at (718) 876-9100.