My question is: Does anyone EVER get used to this?
The feeling that my mouth is so full of plastic; I feel like I want to gag all the time.
I'm feeling really depressed when, prior to surgery, I thought I'd be so happy to be able to smile again.
I know it's very early days for me but it feels like I'll never feel 'normal' again.
I've just found this forum, and I'm hoping that someone whose been through this can reassure me that these foreign objects will eventually feel, if not a part of me, then at least a minimal hindrance.
Thanks to anyone in advance who takes the time to respond to this post.
Sorry still having a very hard time after 8 months of upper only although it does get a little better with time. According to my dentist they are not real teeth and will never feel like real teeth but I do have to say that they look great. On a positive note, I am eating better than at the beginning. Good luck....
I am 14 months in. I have a full upper and a partial lower.. It is easy to forget about the partial lower. However, the full upper continues to consume every waking moment. It's bulky, it's plastic, it tastes bad and I'm allergic to it. There is not a single moment that I forget that I have a full denture.
The difference really is size. A full upper takes up so much space in your mouth. It's really difficult to forget it's there. But, you are also early in the process.
Also, if you feel like gagging, go back to your dentist and ask him/her to trim the back portion of your denture. This is a common issue where the palate portion of the denture hits the gag reflex zone of your mouth.
Consider also that losing your teeth is a devastating event. It has significant impacts on your emotional and mental well being. It's like an amputation and most people will grieve the loss without really understating why they feel the way they do.
You are only now 6 days in. Give it time. You have to find a new normal. It will happen. Just be patient.
Though that was a VERY big adjustment, the most difficult was when I transitioned to full dentures six months ago at age 44. My prior dentist warned me it would likely be the eventual outcome, but nothing can truly prepare one for such a change. As others have said, it is very emotionally traumatic, and a very big adjustment. Keep in mind, when you get your temporary set, they are just that, temporary. Personally, I always thought my temporary set looked "obviously fake", though others could not tell.
While I was healing, I had to learn to eat and speak again, and there was the obvious initial discomfort. I had a lot of mixed emotions, and was very self-conscious about how I looked without my dentures in. Though I've never been vain, I still have my pride. Nonetheless, I never gave up, and adapted to the point I could eat and speak with no problem. One thing I learned is to leave the self-consciousness behind. There have been occasions where I have was out shopping without my dentures and someone stared at me. I simply gave them a harsh look and said, "Haven't you ever seen someone without teeth before? Perhaps you'd like to take a picture, it will last longer!" It was they who felt shame in the end, not me.
I only recently received my permanent dentures yesterday after healing for six months. Once again, I am having to learn how to eat and speak again, as they are slightly different. However, they are VERY realistic and even I cannot tell they are prosthetic, even close-up. I highly recommend a heat-cured set of custom dentures if one can afford it, they are worth every penny. They fit better, look better, and last longer (mine come with a 7 year warranty).
Are they are good as real teeth? No, but they are close enough and look better than my original teeth did! Most importantly, they are functional and allow me to eat without the agony I once endured having dental problems. Yes, it is a BIG adjustment, but it does get better in time. The key is communicating with your dental team, being patient, and accepting you have a long road ahead of you. If your dentist is rude or not compassionate, take control and remind them YOU are the customer, most offices have a money-back assurance. My dental group was very helpful and accommodating.
All that being stated, I am VERY happy with my permanent dentures and don't regret my choice. I chose a very good dentist that was honest, caring, and worked to make sure I got what I wanted in the end. My goal was to be able to not only have a functional set of dentures that allowed me to eat, but a set that looked natural and would not attract attention. I have that now, and though I'm still learning how to speak with my new dentures, it won't take as long to adapt since I've done it before.
Think in terms of months, not days or weeks as far as adaptation. In fact, from start to end, figure on a whole year. After a year, you should be used to dentures to the point they no longer feel quite as foreign. See your dental professional for sore spots, or situations where one has dentures that fit poorly. In addition, don't be afraid to take them out for a while if your mouth gets sore. I still have a subconscious habit of clenching my teeth (dentures), and that makes my gums sore. Every now and then I'll leave them out for a day and simply eat soup, cottage cheese, and ice cream for dessert. It gives my mouth a much needed rest.
I truly hope my story and suggestions help others, as I know how traumatic and depressing it can be adapting to dentures. I cannot stress the importance of patience and dedication to the adjustment process. Keep in mind, dentures are a prosthetic, like an artificial limb, it is not akin to getting glasses. Skills one used to take for granted have to be learned again, it takes time and effort.