What You Need to Know When Your Dentures Become Damaged

Posted on: 12 October 2016

Over time and as your dentures get older they will become more susceptible to breakage or cracking. What do you need to know and what action should you take if this happens?

Why Does This Happen?

It's unfortunate that even though you may follow your dentist's advice to the letter in terms of cleaning and looking after your dentures the plastic within will eventually become weaker. This is due to the fact that your mouth changes its shape subtly as you age and the dentures will not fit as well as they used to. The plates will tend to move more as you are chewing or talking, constantly flexing as the natural suction is trying to keep it in place. This repeated flexing will cause the flexible plastic eventually to break.

What Will the Lab Do?

If your dentures do happen to break, it is best if you see your dentist and then send your dentures to a laboratory where they will analyse the severity. The lab technician may temporarily use some glue to hold the various pieces together as the repairing procedure commences. Usually, a silicone compound is poured into the denture to make a mould of the original shape. Then, some of the plastic is removed from either side of the area where it is cracked and new acrylic is replaced. This is a process that requires some expertise, the right equipment and the right application.

Can I Try Repairing Myself?

Even though it may be tempting, you should never try to repair any broken denture yourself. If you do not do it properly it could end up costing you more money in the long run. Never try and use household glues to put pieces back together. The materials used in the laboratory are very different and made for this purpose. The solvent contained in glues that you might buy domestically are very harsh and could actually melt the acrylic in your denture, further distorting its shape.

If you do try this and get this result it may even be difficult for the dental laboratory to repair it and put it back into the ideal condition for you. Remember that a denture that is distorted will fit very poorly and will cause the formation of sores and blisters. The net result is that you will have to have a new plate made, which is time-consuming and costly.

Can I Deal with the Lab Directly?

If you may be tempted to save some money by sending dentures directly to a laboratory yourself, think again. The lab will not, of course, be able to change the shape of the denture, but only repair them so that they are in the same condition as they were before. Your dentist is more qualified to determine whether you need a denture fit adjustment as well as a repair and can work with the laboratory to ensure that things go according to that plan.