The exceptional comfort of flexible partial dentures might lead some patients to overlook their care. However, treating your denture akin to your natural teeth is paramount. Implementing a daily cleaning routine is essential.
In fact, their intimate adaptation tends to make cleaning and sanitizing flexible dentures effectively more difficult. Unclean dentures can contribute to various oral issues, including gum problems, decay, and thrush. Regular cleaning of your flexible dentures is vital to prevent these problems and maintain your oral health.
Maintaining optimal oral hygiene is crucial for ensuring the longevity and health of your flexible dentures. Proper daily cleaning is imperative for maintaining fresh, functional flexible dentures free of stains, debris, and odors.
Flexible Partial Denture Home Care
Caring for your flexible partial dentures is pivotal to ensuring its longevity, maintaining its natural appearance, and safeguarding your oral health.
Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you maintain your partial’s luster and functionality:
A. Initial Adjustment Period
Understand that partials take time to get used to, especially during the first few months. Sore spots may arise initially, and it’s recommended to schedule a recall appointment after receiving your partial dentures to eliminate any discomfort.
If your mouth tends to be dry, consider using dry mouth relief moisturizing gels to improve the fit of your partial dentures.
Managing Tartar Buildup
Certain individuals with a high alkaline pH factor or those prone to tartar buildup should consider occasional professional cleaning. Pumicing by your dentist or laboratory can restore your partial to its original shine, ensuring it remains as vibrant as when first acquired.
Beware of Boiling
Under no circumstances should you boil or soak your flexible partial denture in hot water. Boiling can compromise the unique properties of nylon partials, affecting both their fit and longevity.
Avoid Harsh Cleaning Solutions
Steer clear of using Clorox or ammonia-based cleaning solutions to soak your Flexite partial denture. These substances can be detrimental to the integrity of the material.
Recommended Safe Denture Cleaners
Consider using “Dawn” dishwashing liquid as an alternative denture cleaner. This mild soap is gentle on both your hands and your dentures, and it can be an excellent, cost-effective solution for keeping your Flexite denture clean.
Attention to Smokers
For patients who smoke cigarettes or cigars, it’s crucial to be diligent in your denture care routine. Regular cleaning becomes even more important due to potential staining and odor caused by smoking.
B. Daily cleaning recommendations for flexible dentures
To maintain the functionality and appearance of your flexible partial dentures, implement the following care guidelines:
- Thorough cleaning and rinse – Regularly clean your partials by washing them with running water, soap, and a denture brush. Ensure thorough rinsing to remove soap residue.
- Avoid Harsh Substances – Refrain from using alcohol, abrasive cleaners, bleaches, whiteners, and similar products, as they may damage or deteriorate the denture’s surface.
- Rinse thoroughly after eating – Prevent buildup and staining by rinsing flexible dentures under warm running water after meals and snacks. This removes food particulates. Rinse your mouth as well to ensure thorough cleanliness.
- Gently brush with soft brush – Brush your dentures daily using a soft denture brush and liquid hand soap, avoiding vigorous scrubbing motions which can damage the resin over time.
- Soaking Time – Soak your denture in the recommended cleaner for the designated time. Consider using solutions like ValClean or TCS according to their instructions for effective cleaning.
- Hydration – Keep your flexible denture in water or a denture solution when not wearing it to maintain surface hydration.
- Use sonic cleaner daily – Sonicating flexible dentures helps dislodge particulates without abrasion. Limit cycles to 1-2 minutes to prevent damage to materials.
- Nighttime Removal – Before sleeping, remove your partial dentures. Whenever possible, keep your dentures out at night to prevent a moist environment that encourages thrush growth. Soak them in solutions like Milton’s to inhibit the development of thrush-causing organisms.
- Leverage effective denture cleaners – Use specialized denture cleaners like Milton’s or Steradent tablets to clean your dentures effectively. Brand-specific cleaners like ValClean properly sanitize flexible materials without causing damage. Follow manufacturer instructions.
- Careful Handling – Clean your dentures over a hand towel in the washbasin or fill the basin with water to prevent accidental dropping and breakage. Avoid placing them in napkins or towels, as they could be easily misplaced.
- Be Mindful of Pets – Keep dentures away from pets, as they might consider them chew toys.
- Professional Check-ups – Visit your dentist annually for routine evaluation of your partial dentures and oral health.
C. Caring for Valplast Flexible Partial Dentures
If you have Valplast flexible partial dentures, adhere to these specific care tips to ensure their longevity and functionality:
- Using Val-Clean Concentrated Denture Cleaner: This cleaner is tailored for Valplast restorations. Soak your denture daily or overnight for effective maintenance.
- Avoid Harsh Cleaning Methods: Refrain from brushing your Valplast denture, as this can remove the polish and roughen the surface.
- Hydration and Storage: Keep your denture hydrated by storing it in water or a denture solution when not in use.
- Handle with Care: While Valplast dentures are durable, handle them gently to prevent any damage, especially to the embedded synthetic teeth.
- Regular Check-ups: Contact your dentist if you experience any discomfort or abnormalities with your Valplast denture or your natural teeth and gums.
D. Caring for Flexite Partial Dentures
Several denture cleaning solutions are safe and effective for Flexite dentures:
- “Efferdent” Anti-Bacterial Tablets
- “Clear Choice” from Bausch & Lomb
- “Plax” from Pfizer
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How often should I clean my flexible dentures?
Flexible dentures require thorough cleaning at least once daily. Rinsing after meals and snacking helps prevent stain and debris buildup.
2. What is the best way to clean flexible dentures?
Use a soft bristled denture brush and mild liquid hand soap to gently clean flexible dentures at least once per day. Avoid vigorous scrubbing.
3. Can I use toothpaste on my flexible partial?
No, toothpaste should be avoided as most contain abrasives that can gradually scratch and dull the resin materials over time with repeated use.
4. Is it safe to use bleach to clean my flexible denture?
In moderation, a 10:1 diluted bleach solution can be used periodically as a 10 minute disinfecting soak. But over-bleaching can damage materials, so use sparingly.
5. How can I get rid of stains on my flexible denture?
For tough stains, soak flexible dentures in Polident, Efferdent, or other designated cleaner overnight 2-3 times per week. Avoid hot water.
6. Can I use vinegar to clean my flexible partial?
Yes, a 30 minute soak in a 50/50 white vinegar and water solution can help remove odors and acts as a disinfectant. Rinse well afterward.
7. How do I store my flexible dentures?
Always store flexible dentures in water or cleaning solution when not being worn to keep surfaces hydrated and prevent cracking. Never let them dry out.
Remember, there’s no need to overspend on commercial denture cleaners. Many effective cleaning solutions are readily available, catering to various preferences and budgets.
Consistently following proper flexible denture cleaning and care best practices maximizes hygiene and longevity. Be sure to inspect and adjust your techniques as needed over time. Consult your dentist for professional cleanings every 3-6 months. With concerted effort, your flexible dentures will provide years of comfortable service.