Why Do Dentures Stop Fitting?

dental professional with xray of mouth on tablet

Dentures have come a long way in the last couple of decades. It used to be that you could immediately tell if someone was wearing dentures, and it used to be that people who wore dentures dealt with constant readjusting, clacking and falling out. Not anymore! Dentures now look so real and fit so well that they’re often indistinguishable to other people; they just think you have a great smile.

However, even the nicest set of dentures will start to feel not so nice after a few years, and you’ll have to get them replaced. It’s just a natural mile marker in the long-term path of choosing dentures as your tooth replacement method. And there are a few reasons your dentures stop fitting:

  • Jawbone Movement/Deterioration: Because dentures don’t replace the roots of your teeth, which are what stabilize your other teeth as well as your jaw, they don’t stop the jaw from moving, shrinking and deteriorating. As your jaw changes, your dentures will occasionally need readjusted.
  • Warping/Damage to the Denture: Cleaning, use and age can all get to your dentures over time. They can warp, crack and chip, which can affect not only the way they look and function, but also the way they fit.
  • Too Many Readjustments: Eventually, you will have to part with your beloved pair of dentures – they can only be altered and adjusted so many times. But it doesn’t have to be a sad occasion, because it means you get a whole new custom set of dentures.

What to Do with Poorly Fitting Dentures

So what do you do once you notice that your dentures have become uncomfortable? Here are some signs you need to adjust or replace your poorly-fitting dentures:

  • Chipped, broken or cracked teeth
  • Pressure sores or other oral abrasions
  • Pain in the jaw and/or gums
  • Problems chewing and/or speaking
  • Dentures keep coming out of place
  • Chronic odors from the dentures or the mouth

And what you should do after you realize it’s time for an upgrade:

  • Call your dentist or oral surgeon and schedule an appointment.
  • Have new x-rays taken of your jaw.
  • Get fitted for new dentures.
  • Have your oral surgeon perform any necessary dental bone grafting.
  • Ask your dentist about dental implants as an alternative to dentures, or the All-on-Four.

Dentures are meant to fit your mouth so well it’s hard to notice they’re even in, so when your dentures stop fitting properly, it’s important to get it taken care of. It’s an easy fix, and gives your dentist or oral surgeon another opportunity to track your oral health and make sure you’re headed on the best path.