When they are first made, dentures will provide a snug fit to the mouth of the patient. This snug fit is necessary to keep the denture in place. A properly fitting denture should be held in place by suction to the mouth. However, over time dentures will begin to fit more poorly. There are a number of reasons that dentures become loose, but there are two primary reasons: changes in the shape of the mouth and damage to the denture.
Without natural teeth or extensive dental implants, a person’s mouth will change shape over time. This is due to the removal of the teeth which works to hold the gums and other mouth tissue in place. Minor changes in a person’s mouth shape is not uncommon, or a reason for concern, but it will result in loose dentures. Damaged dentures are another reason that dentures will become loose. Small cracks that are not apparent, or do not appear significant, can allow dentures to flex and not fit properly.
Loose dentures can cause more problems that just being unpleasant to wear. Loose dentures can impact speech clarity and make it difficult to eat anything but soft food. Even worse, dentures that are loose will be exposed to stresses and pressures that it was never intended to handle. When biting down on a loose denture, the pressure may be placed in one specific area instead being spread out over the entire plate. The focus of pressure in one place can cause the denture to crack and break.
There are a number of different things that can be done to correct loose fitting dentures. Many companies sell products such as adhesive pastes and pads that help to hold the denture in place. Though adhesives can help comfort and speech difficulties, they do nothing to correct the other problems caused by loose dentures. The proper way to deal with loose dentures is to bring them into the office for a refitting.
Poorly fitting dentures can be relined or rebuilt, depending on what is needed. Relining is a process of adding a new layer of denture material onto the existing denture to make it fit properly. Rebasing is a process that creates a new denture that reuses the existing teeth part of the denture. Dentures may need to be replaced if they are badly damaged, though most dentures only need relining or rebasing. A person should not delay getting his or her loose dentures fixed and run the risk of serious damage to the denture.