About Denture Hygiene

Dr Tamsyn Ooi Yi Ying BDS (UK)

All the steps of making a denture have been completed, and the multiple visits have finally paid off – a brand-new denture is finally in your hands (or mouth)! You return home and get a few good months’ uses out of it, only to find one day with dismay that for some reason, they have changed shape and color, or worse still, that your mouth looks red and inflamed; what is going on?

Dentures are a great and convenient replacement to missing gaps in our teeth to restore aesthetics and function, but special care should still be afforded to them to make sure our dentures look great and last as long as possible, as well as avoid potential oral complications associated with improper denture wear such as denture stomatitis.

Here are some important tips, Dos, and Don’ts of caring for your denture.


  • Remove your denture before going to bed and soak them overnight.

Dentures must be removed before going to bed at night. It gives the tissues in the mouth time to rest and recover, as well as reduces the risk of denture stomatitis, an inflammatory condition of the mouth related to prolonged denture wear. Soaking the dentures in water or denture solution overnight prevents them from drying out, which can result in the denture changing shape.

  • Clean your dentures.

Dentures tend to trap food, bacteria, and other particles over time in the mouth. A daily cleanse with a soft toothbrush and soap will remove the debris, followed by soaking the denture in a solution with a denture-cleaning tablet. Both steps are necessary, as certain microbes are not removable from dentures using only mechanical brushing. Rinse your denture with water after every meal to remove food debris.

  • Handle your dentures carefully.

Take out the dentures as your dentist has instructed you to; they have been designed to clip in a certain way (for partial dentures) and taking them out with too much force in the wrong direction can bend the metal clasps or distort the denture over time. Dropping them or tossing them can cause them to chip or fracture, or bend critical components.

  • Keep your own mouth clean.

The gums on which the denture sits always maintain intimate contact with the denture – if there is contamination on the denture or on the gums, your oral tissues will press against it for the duration of the denture wearing and can result in infection or inflammation. 


  • Avoid toothpaste or hard cleaning pastes.

Toothpaste (particularly whitening toothpaste) contains abrasive particles that may result in damage to the acrylic base and teeth over time.

  • Avoid soaking your denture in hot water.

Do not soak your denture in hot water, as this will cause the material to warp and the denture to change shape.

  • Do not use bleach or mouthwash to soak your dentures.

Bleach can cause overall bleaching of the colour in the dentures, resulting in a washed-out prosthesis. Soaking in alcohol mouthwashes can cause crazing (fine cracks) in the acrylic material, and chlorhexidine mouthwashes can cause staining.

  • Do not allow your denture to dry out.

 Aside from taking them out at night, dentures should be kept moist.

  • Do NOT use hypochlorite containing solutions to soak your metal-containing dentures.

The metal in these dentures will react to sodium hypochlorite and corrode. 

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