I've had complete extractions and both upper and lower dentures inserted (late July 2015). For years before this, I suffered periodic tooth loss. I learned to smile with my mouth closed, along with chewing. I would usually cover my mouth when I laughed as well. Now, I am getting used to having a mouthful of teeth. I can actually smile and laugh openly. I still chew with my mouth closed, but chewing is a bit of a challenge still. I will sometimes discreetly remove my lower dentures to really enjoy my food, then go to the restroom to insert them back in. I also have lost weight, from 145 lbs to 115 lbs, so my appearance has changed. Some of my weight loss is from getting used to eating with my dentures, but most of it is from the medication I take for my type 2 diabetes (diagnosed July 2014). It took me months to finally decide to start the dental procedure. I realized that once I decided to have it done, there was no going back. When I felt I was ready, I made that phone call to set up the appointment to begin. My husband has worn dentures for many years.
Bottom line: I am enjoying my new smile and am getting used to using it. I look into the mirror and think, "I look and feel pretty good for a 65 year old woman." Although getting used to new dentures is indeed a challenge, I have no regrets.
I appreciate reading this forum and being able to share our experiences.
Eating..........what used to come so naturally is such a challenge now. Before I begin to eat a meal, I ask myself "will my dentures become loose? will I wind up removing my bottom denture so I can enjoy the meal and will I be able to chew after I do?" Well, sometimes they do, and, sometimes I do. But, you know what? I am determined to eat and I am determined to enjoy my food. While the process may not be the same as it was before my extractions and dentures, I believe it will get better. I just take smaller bites, smaller portions, experiment a little, drink plenty of liquids while I eat and not worry about how other people react..to an extent. In public, I have my little kit in my pocketbook and there is usually a restroom nearby.
Anyone else have thoughts about this particular challenge?
I was just saying to my husband earlier that eating is such a chore now. My denture and partial are at war with one another. They do not play nice at all! I've gotten kind of used to liquid meals just from an efficiency perspective. I've never been one to waste time on useless things and eating has come to feel like one of those useless things. I now eat to survive more than for the enjoyment.
We went to A & W and the only thing on the menu that I could have was fries. They used to be so satisfying. Now . . . not so much. We even went for ice cream. That also used to be very enjoyable but it was all I could do to get it down. It just seems like more work than it's worth really. Every time I eat, the only thing I can think of is getting to a bathroom to wash my denture and rinse the crap out that gets under them. So I rush through my meal towards that end.
Some days I deeply regret getting this done but then promptly remember the many years of pain I suffered leading up to this point and that makes me feel better.
Hi HeatherP! I do share your pain. Food does taste different now. Sometimes I can actually enjoy my food.....to a certain extent. But, I still feel some anxiety beforehand, especially when eating in public. I've had some success during lunch at work with a taco, tuna salad, meat loaf and mashed potatoes with peas. I did cut my taco and meat loaf into small pieces before chewing. I still ,sometimes, have to go the ladies room at work in the early afternoon to remove my lowers, clean them and my mouth, and reinsert them. They feel loose, and that makes it hard to speak correctly.
That said, I have never regretted the extractions or the dentures. I knew beforehand that there was no going back. My natural teeth, or what I had left of them, were in poor shape. I also suffered with occasional severe pain in my mouth. My facial appearance has improved greatly. I still have a few wrinkles, a small scar on my left chin (from a childhood injury) but...........I have a nice smile. I try to keep my sense of humor during these dental challenges. In public, I try to keep cool and the fact that I wear dentures now is a non-issue.
I go for another reline next Monday. My uppers are fine and fit well after they set awhile with the adhesive I use, but the bottoms still need a tweeking. The teeth on the right side are still a tad too high. I know that the dentist sees a lot of patients, but while he/she is with me, I insist on getting the care and attention I need for my dentures and me.
My appointment went well. She checked my bite, and I just needed some tweeking on my lowers. I did not need a reline. My next appointment is in the middle of January when I get my hardlines.. My dentures do feel more comfortable in my mouth, but I still take it a day at a time. Speaking and eating are better most days as long as I feel my dentures are secure. I'm still liking my new smile.
That dental office is always busy when I am there. Lots of folks in the same boat in various stages of the "denture" experience.
I really enjoyed my Thanksgiving dinner today. Eating with dentures is becoming a pleasure again as my tongue is getting used to them. I experimented one night and left my dentures in at bedtime as they were secure and comfortable. But, in the morning, my bottom plate was loose because the adhesive didn't hold through the night. Anyone else attempted this? I usually remove them at bedtime and let them soak in Polident overnight: they do feel fresh and clean in the morning. I also brush my mouth and tongue.
I just want to give a virtual hug to all the newbies here. It has been a tough challenge for me in those first few months, but I don't regret it all.
I'm with you, I also thoroughly enjoyed my Thanksgiving dinner! Other than just eating the potatoes/stuffing/side dish and veggies and having to skip out on the meat - which has been my life for so long - I'd pretty much forgotten how much I LOVE meat! At first it was because I didn't have enough dependable teeth which turned in to not having enough teeth to chew. Then when I got my dentures I couldn't eat. Even with adhesive I didn't dare eat much because the bottoms always came loose, making life interesting when the bottoms would flip up on their side with food in my mouth at the same time.
Prior to today's dinner, other than the stuff you don't HAVE to chew, I've only managed (meat wise) 1 small slice of meat lovers pizza on 2 occassions, some BBQ pulled pork, and 1 KFC chicken breast with the skin removed.
But today I ate like it was the last meal I'd ever see. And I have no regrets!!!
I used Secure paste on my uppers and lowers. It held through dinner and dessert but my lowers came out within an hour after dinner. I know from previous experience as well as doing some reading that it's better to use the strips on the bottoms but I thought I'd give it a try.
I have slept in my teeth a few times, usually only after a soft reline so they are nice and snug.
I am glad to have found this forum as well. Sharing personal experiences is a big help in the coping process. Speaking and eating do get better with time. However,some days are more successful than others. After the extraction process, the bleeding has to stop, the stitches have to be removed, the sores have to heal, the daily routine has to be adjusted, and the tongue has to get used to those new oral residents. (smile)
A few months ago, I was considering having implants for my bottom dentures. But now, I am comfortable enough to not have this done. My bottoms are behaving themselves most of the time, enabling me to chew with little worry about them coming out. My speech has improved. I still keep my kit in my pocketbook where-ever I go, .but I don't have to use it as much. I still have a nice smile with little if any discomfort. I can live with that.