For people who have lost a few teeth, dentures are the perfect solution to be able to speak and smile confidently again. However, maintaining dentures can be burdensome to most people. Obviously, they’re not real teeth—so you have to care for them differently.
Whether you have a partial or full set, dentists will advise you to remove your plate so you could brush them after eating. You also need to soak them in a particular solution every day. All these steps will ensure that your dentures will last longer and protect your gums from possible infection.
It takes a while to get used to wearing dentures. There are also occasions when you feel like ignoring your dentist’s advice. Perhaps it’s been a long, tiring day at work, or maybe you had one too many drinks, and you just want to hit the bed. The most frequently asked question of patients is: “Can you sleep with your dentures in?”
The answer may not be as straightforward as a yes or a no. Read on to know the risks of not removing your dentures at night.
The Risk of Re-absorption
Re-absorption is a common concern of dentists when it comes to patients with dentures. It’s when the pressure of the artificial plate creates a loss of bone volume and density on the gums. Over time, the dentures may become loose and cause pain and discomfort. It also affects the structure of your face, making it look saggier and older. The risk of re-absorption is heightened when a patient wears the dentures 24 hours a day, without giving the mouth a time to rest and heal.
The Risk of Aspiration
Another risk dental practitioners warn their patients about is aspirating during sleep. It’s a dangerous and valid concern that could even be fatal. When the dentures slip while the patient is asleep, he may panic and immediately gasp for air. This will cause the denture to get stuck near the throat, blocking the airways.
The Risk of Infections
Whether or not you have dentures, having good oral hygiene is imperative. When you do wear dentures, however, you need to be extra meticulous. Failing to clean your artificial teeth creates a build-up of bacteria, plaque, and tartar that can affect the remaining ones. It also leads to gum problems and mouth sores. For this reason, dentists always tell their patients to remove their dentures at night and soak them in water or solution.
When It Is Okay to Wear Dentures in Your Sleep
There are instances when patients forget to remove their dentures before bedtime. Doctors will warn you about the health hazards, but it may be down to personal choice and comfort. For some people who are suffering from sleep-related breathing disorders, wearing dentures while sleeping may even prevent Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
When in doubt, discuss your sleeping and hygiene preferences with your dental practitioner. Dentures, even the most natural-looking ones, are still artificial objects that require proper cleaning. It may be okay to wear dentures at night from time to time, but it’s best to give your gum tissues periods of rest.
If you are looking to know more about sleeping with dentures, get in touch with your local dentist in Ann Arbor today! We’re happy to help.