New Dentures--A Very Personal Experience

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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.

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Diana

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Posted 4 years ago

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Diana

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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?

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HeatherP

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Hi Diana, thanks so much for sharing your experience with us! I don't know how I didn't see this earlier as I would have responded. I hate to see people posting and getting no response. :(

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.
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Diana

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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.  

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Diana

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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.  

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Diana

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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.


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Lynn Cattanio

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Diana thank you so very much for sharing your
Experience with your dentures. It's nice to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. One week ago Friday Maynard solid week since I've had my teeth extracted. I had all of my teeth extracted and Dentures put in all in the same day and as you can imagine it was almost unbearable. I don't know that I've ever felt such pain embarrassment and probably every word that you can possibly come up with that would hurt the human Pride physically and mentally. I would love it if you would reach out to me and speak to me a little more on your experience. If you could friend me on Facebook that would be great. I am listed under the name Lynn Cattaniol@yahoo.com
I look forward to hearing from you and being able to share in this experience with someone who is knowledgeable on the issue. As I am struggling daily. I wear my top plate all the time until my husband goes to bed at night. My bottom one has to be redone it continues to fall out of my head and I continue to go back to the dentist as they tried to file it and make it suitable for my mouth. I've been back two times already but they say that is to be expected. So if you don't mind please reach out to me I'm really enjoyed hearing some of your story.
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AliciaP

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Diana,

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.
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Diana

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My husband is one of those people who can wear his dentures without adhesive and eat almost anything, even steak. He's had dentures for years. He does occasionally remove them at night to give his mouth a rest because his mouth will be sore. Me....I've got to have that adhesive to feel secure about eating and talking. If they feel loose in my mouth, I have to go to the ladies room and "fix it".  lol I just removed them this evening and they are securely soaking. I treat my dentures like fragile jewelry every time I handle them.
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Beverlie

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It has been so helpful reading all of your responses regarding your denture experience. I am a week and a half into my denture process, wearing temporary's right now. I just began my adhesive process yesterday and what an adjustment. I'm on soft foods at the moment... Thank God for mashed potatoes...lol. I just want to say thanks to each of you for sharing your experiences and advice as I continue on my journey of new teeth.
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Trisha Sands

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I am getting mine out tomorrow and temporaries... very nervous and wondering how I will ever learn to talk and keep my teeth secure!!!!


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AliciaP

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Just like every other thing that you've had to learn - with lots of patience and practice!

You'll do great!
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nyernga

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One full week since extractions (15) and upper/lowers. Uppers are fine but these bottoms are going to need alot more tweeking. Amen for mashed potatoes, and pudding, and oatmeal...............funny how I'm eating all the things I used to eat before I even HAD teeth........they call that full circle I think....lol
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Beverlie

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You are so right nyernga!We were adorable then as infants, and we are still adorable as adults... I find keeping my humor helps me through those days of adjustment and emotional overload.We'll get back to normal real soon!

Good luck to you Trisha in your surgery... I'm thinking of you!
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AliciaP

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Trisha, hoping and praying that everything does/did go well for you today!

Please let us know how you did!

A little bit of advice - take pain meds as prescribed, even if you aren't having pain. It is always easier to keep pain away than it is to make it go away! Oh and ice will be your best friend for a few days!.
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Diana

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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)


(Edited)
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AliciaP

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And what a process/adjustment it is!
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AliciaP

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Everyone, please feel free to visit my thread as well - 13 weeks and counting
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Diana

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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.


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nyernga

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I too was considering doing lower implants but since I haven't even had my hard reline done yet, and with others saying it gets better I may hold off on it. The uppers are fine but could use a little trimming. The lowers are the problem area. Sea Bond wafers work great on the upper and Poligrip seems to work well for the lowers. I've tried all different types of adhesives but this seems to work best. Only down side is removing it from the gums. I've found using hot water and swishing it around my mouth seems to be the best option.
(Edited)
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Diana

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I finally got my hardlines today. My dentures feel snug, but I will still use adhesive. The taste of the hardline gunk is yuch ! and this taste is still lingering some. But, I ate a full meal at KFC with my husband after the appointment and I did enjoy that. Great news being on my own now (no more appts) with a new smile.
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AliciaP

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Diana, please keep in touch! For all of us that won't have our permanent teeth for awhile yet, it will be great having someone on "the other side" to tell us how things are going and what to expect!

Congrats!
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Ken

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Diana, congratulations! Glad to hear you have teeth that fit.
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Diana

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Thank you Ken and AliciaP for your responses.  My dentures still feel nice and snug and comfortable. However, to eat an evening meal successfully, I find I usually have to remove, rinse, reapply adhesive and re-insert my bottom dentures. Then, they are secure while I chew. Just a minor inconvenience . I don't want those mini-implants so I will happily make do.  
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Diana

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I have used either Polygrip or Fixodent adhesive. Both work fine for me. I do see there is difference in application style. Fixodent is like icing on a cake with a continuous line and Polygrip is like buttons / dots.  
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nyernga

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I actually had to have a second upper chair reline today. They were just too loose and there was a gap between my front gum and the back of the denture of about 3/16ths of an inch. If I tried to blow my nose or spoke for any length of time, the upper would just drop out. Not to mention the collection of saliva in that gap that undermined the integrity of my sea bond wafer. So far so good but with 4 months to go until my hard reline, I foresee myself going back. The saving grace is I went to ebay and bought denture polishing compound so now when I do my own sanding down of hi spots, I can also polish to a smooth finish. Thank you Dremel................
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Diana

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I admire your resourcefulness, nyernga.


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nyernga

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Thank you Diana, I've become pretty adept at sitting at the table, dremel in hand using different sanding wheels and finishing with a nice smooth polishing. I just have to be careful I don't sand away too much that the denture breaks. For now though I am done. I just apply a small amount of benzodent before my morning insert. :)
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AliciaP

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Where do you live? We may all send our teeth to you and you could start your own business! Lol
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nyernga

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Lol......in Georgia....
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Jennifer Joyner

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I just want to thank each and every one of you for being so open about your journey. Not feeling like some Alien is so refreshing. I am 12 days in after 20 extractions and a full upper and lower. I have found stories and advice for each "mental breakdown" I have had LOL. I just went and had my first adjustment done last week to help alleviate some REALLY sore spots and lessen the "line-backer mouth" I've acquired. I couldn't pucker and my teeth felt like a Tonka truck in my mouth, After my adjustment I felt like a million bucks, but that feeling was all gone this morning when I put my teeth in. I understand now to have a little more patience and expect this constant change. Thanks to all once more...I will certainly be checking back in!
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nyernga

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Jennifer. Patience is the key. Your gums will continue to shrink for 6 months. During that period the dentures will require minor adjustments. DO NOT attempt to do a self reline.......If they are loose, call your dentist. I'm about 2 months out from havine my teeth pulled and it does take some getting used to. I have found that even after having them out overnight, they take some tweaking in the morning. This is a lifestyle change but it's one for the better....:)
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Jennifer Joyner

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Nyernga, Thanks so much for your reply. I received my soft reline last Friday. I still had some sore spots so the molding process was most unpleasant!! The taste after was pretty bad too. However even though I have some movement (mostly on the bottom) I FEEL WONDERFUL! The fit is so much better, and even though it was with a knife and fork I got to eat a fish "sammich" from McDonalds this weekend!!! I felt like throwing confetti LOL. I ate a cheeseburger the same way but did experience some small difficulty and see that I will have to find the right adhesive for certain things. Any ideas of when I may actually be able to bite, because this weekend was Heavenly?! I was sooooo hungry LOL.....Also I can see that folks on here generally use a combo of products as far as adhesives...What has been your (or anyone else who wishes to replies) experience?
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nyernga

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Jennifer,
 The chewing all depends on what your chewing, how much your gums have shrunk and the type of adhesive you are using. I also fine hot beverages tend to degrade the integrity of the adhesive whether it be a paste type of the wafer style that I use on my upper. My director always brings breakfast for our monthly meetings and this past friday it was burritos from Chick fil a. I still cannot bite down using my front teeth so I had to use a fork but I was able to chew the entire burrito.:)
Adhesive wise I use the pink poligrip. It holds good and it doesn't take two hours to remove at night. The poligrip in the green box holds a bit better and last a bit longer but takes forever to remove. Like I said on my upper I use the Sea Bond wafer. Holds great and removal is a snap. :)   Just keep trying different brands until you find the one that works best for you. From everything I've read, once the hard reline is done, some folks don't even use adhesive. ;)
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Diana

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I dunno........after my hard-reline was done my dentures do fit snugly, however, I still apply adhesive. to be on the safe side. Even when my bottom plates get a little loose, they still fit well until I go to chew. lol
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Diana

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I dunno........after my hard-reline was done my dentures do fit snugly, however, I still apply adhesive. to be on the safe side. Even when my bottom plates get a little loose, they still fit well until I go to chew. lol
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Jennifer Joyner

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Thanks so much Nyernga and Diana! I am going to explore your suggestions because that whole chewing thing we all do is highly underrated LOL
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Ken

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I think I've figured out why they made my dentures so loose. They say you have to train your tongue, cheek and lip muscles to control your new dentures. I think they made mine big enough for my muscles to have "handles" to grab on to. LOL

I shouldn't have talked so much. That may be why they overestimated the size of my mouth. I still can't convince my wife I have a small mouth either....
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Diana

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Thank goodness that yucky hard-liner taste has disappeared.

When removing my bottom plates, I've learned to use my tongue to help  guide them out.

Still smilin'