Proper denture care is essential for the health and long life of dentures. Proper denture care can help you prevent minor nuisances like bad breath as well as more serious problems like gum disease and stomatitis.
Unfortunately, denture care can be much harder if you have arthritis. Here are some tips for overcoming the challenges to ensure your dentures are properly cared for, no matter how bad your arthritis.
Caring for Dentures on Your Own
If you are living on your own and have to care for your dentures yourself, there are many ways to make the task easier. A basic precaution is to put a towel in the sink basin while you are brushing your dentures. This means that if you drop them, they’re less likely to break.
And if it becomes too hard to hold your dentures while you brush them, you can put a towel down on a flat surface and brush them there.
If you are having trouble holding the brush, there are many options other than a regular toothbrush. Denture brushes are available with a wide, broad handle that is perpendicular to the brush (the brush will stick out between your fingers if you hold the handle in your palm). This gives you a better grip on the brush and more stability for cleaning dentures. If you find the motion of brushing to be too cumbersome, you can try an electric toothbrush. Handle covers are available that make it easier to hold the electric toothbrush.
Never try to avoid cleaning your dentures by simply leaving them in. Your dentures need cleaning at least daily. And sleeping with dentures in has been shown to significantly increase your risk of pneumonia.
Getting Help with Denture Care
If you feel mostly confident about your denture care, but want to be extra sure your dentures stay clean, you can get your dentures professionally cleaned to remove tartar and stains. If you need help cleaning your dentures on a daily basis, you might need to recruit someone to help out, either a family member or a nurse or other assistive personnel.