The Proper Use of Denture Adhesive

There is some controversy about the use of denture adhesive, also called denture cream. According to the American College of Prosthodontists (ACP), a professional organization of dentists trained to manufacture dentures and other dental prostheses, the best use of denture adhesive is to use none. They say that in properly fitting dentures, no denture adhesive is necessary.

However, according to recently published denture care recommendations in the Journal of the American Dental Association, a small amount of denture adhesive can be beneficial even in properly-fitting dentures because it increases stability and creates a seal that prevents food particles and bacteria from getting under the denture.

If you are going to use denture adhesive, here are ACP’s guidelines.

Applying Denture Adhesive

For the upper denture, use three or four dabs of denture cream about the size of a pencil eraser. These should be placed in the middle of the plate, the part that contacts your upper palate. For the lower denture, use just three dabs distributed evenly through the curve of the denture.

Never fill up your denture or try to cover the entire surface with denture cream. If denture cream oozes out when you bite down on your denture, you have used too much.

Additional adhesive generally doesn’t improve the fit. In fact, it can make it worse. If you are unhappy with the security of your dentures with this amount of denture adhesive, you likely should have your dentures adjusted or replaced.

Problems with Denture Adhesive

Beginning in 2009, a number of people came forward with lawsuits about potential health effects associated with denture adhesive. These lawsuits were related to hyperzincuria, essentially zinc poisoning that can cause neurological damage. Denture creams often contain small amounts of zinc, which is fine in certain doses, but could become hazardous when people used too much adhesive. In many of the cases, people used very large doses of denture adhesive, leading to the problem. People who use the recommended amount of denture adhesive are at a very low risk of hyperzincuria.

However, a more common problem can be gum irritation associated with denture adhesive. You should never wear your dentures overnight (except for the brief breaking-in period), but it’s especially important to remove and clean your dentures if you use denture cream.

If you are looking for dentures that fit properly and don’t need denture adhesive, FOY® Dentures are designed to give a better fit than traditional dentures. To learn whether they’re right for you, contact a local dentist who has been trained to design them.

By |April 10th, 2014|Uncategorized|

About the Author:

This post was written by Rod Strickland. Dr. Strickland is a dentist in Savannah, GA. He is the inventor of the Denture Fountain of Youth® technique.