Reline Dentures

Denture fitting is so crucial to comfortable use that a slight misalignment can create many far-reaching problems in your mouth.  The problem arises from the fact that your mouth is constantly changing, and for those in their later years, it’s for the worse.  Gums and jawbone shrink with time as part of the natural aging process.  Dentures that may have fit perfectly at first can become unsuitable for chewing as they loosen and slide around.  The rule of thumb is that every year or two you should reline dentures.

When it comes to relining dentures, there are several different methods to choose from.

The hard reline is the ideal way to repair the fit of dentures without having to do a completely new fitting from scratch.  Your dentist will cut back some of the plastic on the tissue-contacting part of the denture.  He or she will then apply a film of soft putty across the area.  After placing the denture back into the mouth, the dentist will have a new impression to work with.  Once the putty has hardened it can be used to cast an addition to your existing dentures that will reflect the new anatomy of your gums.  A hard reline can be completed the same day if the impression is made in the morning.

A soft reline is done in the event that the patient cannot wear hard plastic dentures even after extensive fittings.  The inside of the denture will be lined with soft and pliable material that stays that way for at least a year.  The softer liner will cause less discomfort than the regular acrylic base, but may cause problems with adhesion.  That’s why a soft reline is often a bad choice because the symptoms are indicative of other problems that should be addressed.  Most reasons for gum soreness are either poorly built dentures or gums that have receded.  In most cases a hard reline is more of a permanent solution.

Temporary relines are necessary when the gums have become diseased or severely swollen from bad dentures.  In this case, there is no point taking a new impression for a hard reline while the gums are in such bad shape.  A temporary reline with medicinal qualities will help alleviate the symptoms of swelling, bleeding, and soreness.  The temporary reline is quite soft and will help keep the dentures in place until a new impression can be taken.

Relining dentures is something you’ll have to do regularly just like going in for a dentist-performed cleaning.  Ideally you should avoid the need for soft or temporary relines by carefully monitoring the state of the fit and the state of your gums.  Keep up a regular checkup schedule with your dentist as well so that you can catch problems before they get out of hand.

Have specific questions?

All Article Categories

Before & After Photos

Suggested Doctors

Recently Asked Questions