False teeth or dentures are used to replace missing teeth that have been lost due to decay, periodontal disease, and injuries. Even if these dentures use porcelain and dental acrylic materials, these are still susceptible to stains and plaque formation. Food stains and nicotine stains are common why your dentures may look ugly and smell bad. Unfortunately for smokers, nicotine stain is the hardest to remove and it cannot just be cleaned by regular brushing. Heavy stains will require professional cleaning to avoid damaging the surfaces of the denture. Nicotine stains that are of lighter shade may still be removed by soaking with dental solutions.
Here are some steps you can clean light nicotine stains:
- Place a plastic basin filled with water or a folded towel at the bottom of your sink to avoid damaging your dentures in case you accidentally drop it while cleaning.
- Wash food debris with warm or cold water but never use hot water as it will warp the denture materials.
- Use soft toothbrush and denture toothpaste but do not use any toothpaste that has abrasive ingredients.
- Submerge the denture into a denture solution according to the manufacturer’s direction on the label. Check the label on how long you should soak the denture in the solution. Dental health associations do not recommend soaking it in the denture solution overnight.
- Take out the denture from the solution and then brush it again and make sure to include crevices and metal surfaces. Rinse well with warm or cold water.
- If stains are still present, mix a solution of baking soda and water and soak the denture for at least 20 minutes. The Environmental Law Centre noted that baking soda will not scratch the denture’s surfaces especially the porcelain. Just use 2 teaspoons of baking soda and mix it in a bowl of warm water.
- If stains persist, consult your dentist and have him clean and whiten the denture using his dental tools. Never attempt to do denture bleaching as you may cause damage to the surfaces. There are also metal surfaces on the denture that may react differently on bleaching solutions. Let the professionals do their magic on your denture to avoid the extra cost of replacing the whole denture.
Of course, it is always best to stop smoking and maintain good oral hygiene to prevent oral diseases and cancer. Find ways to control yourself from smoking and totally stay away from this vice.