The common misconception is that dentures are for the elderly – you know, the 65+ population. That is not always the case though, nowadays it is not hard to find someone under 65 with dentures.
There are many reasons people need dentures and even more causes of it. Genetics play a role in our oral health, health conditions out of our control can have negative effects on our oral health, injuries can result in the need for dentures, and most importantly – improper personal hygiene and care can lead to dentures. Here are five signs to be aware of that show you might need dentures.
Red, swollen, tender, or bleeding gums
This is the easiest physical sign that you need to see a professional. Red, swollen, tender, or bleeding gums are all signs of inflammation or signs of gingivitis. Without proper treatment and care, this can progress to severe gum disease, bone loss, pain, tooth loss, and possibly the need for dentures.
Signs of inflammation do not automatically mean you need dentures – it does mean you need to seek professional help. If addressed early, your dentist can help you restore tooth health to keep your natural teeth.
Loose or shifting teeth – or increasing gaps between your teeth
Gaps and spaces between your teeth are common during your teenage years but as you age gaps may be a sign of a hidden problem – such as bone loss from gum disease. This is not easily diagnosable as bone loss occurs under the surface, so without x-rays you would not know the truth.
This process does not take place over night – but if left untreated, it could result in tooth extraction and possibly dentures. If your teeth have shifted and gaps are appearing – go, see your dentist.
You are already missing a couple of teeth
You might think your problem is solved if the tooth is already missing; sure, kids lose teeth daily but that is to make room for their adult teeth to grow in. Once you lose your adult teeth, it does not grow back.
Maybe you had a tooth extracted because it abscessed and that was your final resort. That would not be anything new or shocking in the dental world; but as you lose more teeth the pressure grows on your remaining teeth because now fewer teeth are doing all the work. This results in an higher chance of losing more teeth. Getting dentures at this point will help take some of the pressure off your remaining natural teeth, allowing you to keep them for a longer period.
Struggles with eating some foods
This struggle does not mean you need dentures but it certainly sheds light that something is wrong with one or more tooth in your mouth. If you experience pain when eating hard or chewy foods, you may have a cracked tooth and the pressure is making the crack worse. Pain when eating cold or sugary foods? You might have a cavity that needs some attention.
Struggle with eating may be a sign of gum disease or maybe you are missing a tooth; and we have already addressed the consequences of that issue.
This is probably something you did not think of because maybe the correlation between indigestion and your teeth is not blatantly obvious; but it will make sense if this is the first time you are hearing about it.
If you cannot chew properly you will likely end up swallowing bigger pieces of food which is difficult for your stomach to digest. It slows down your digestion process and leads to indigestion. Why can you not chew properly? A cracked tooth? A cavity? A missing tooth? All of which are signs you need to speak to a professional to devise a treatment plan and see if you need dentures.
Finally, a not so secretive sixth sign you might need dentures; you often hide your smile because of missing or damaged teeth. Dentures were created to help you live a more stress-free life. One where you do not have to worry about pain and the list of foods you worry about eating decreases drastically (say goodbye to the sticky stuff). For some, getting dentures is an aesthetic choice because, “look good, feel good” – right? Feeling good increases your confidence and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that!
So, if you are seeing any of the signs mentioned above, consult with a dental professional to create a treatment plan and see what your options are. There are many steps that can be taken that are in your control, before needing to call us, Black & Gilmore Denture Clinic – your local Lethbridge denture specialists since 1981!
Contact us today and book a free consultation!
Did you know? We also offer out of office visits.
What is a denturist?
Trained in assessing, diagnosing, and providing treatment for patients who are missing some or all their teeth, denturists provide denture care services directly to the public, and are known as primary dental health care providers. Denturists also study the technical art of fabricating partial and complete dentures and can create them in their own onsite laboratories.
Some denturists, like us, attend to patients in Care Homes and hospitals because we, along with other members of the Denturist Association of Alberta strive to provide you with the best denture services available today!
In Alberta, you do not need a referral to see a denturist. They are regulated by the College of Alberta Denturists and licensed by the provincial government.