More than 35 million Americans today have none of their natural teeth remaining, and have to wear dentures as a result. But no matter what types of dentures you may wear everyday — permanent dentures from an implant dentist or a removable dental bridge — it can be tempting to leave your new dentures in when you go to sleep at night.
However, a new study from Japan’s Nihon University School of Dentistry has found that sleeping with your dentures in can be more damaging to your health than it may seem.
According to the study, which observed 524 men and women with an average age of 88, those who wore their dentures to bed every night were twice as likely to contract pneumonia than those who took their dentures out before going to sleep.
That’s about the same risk of getting pneumonia that conditions like respiratory disease and a history of stroke carry, according to a Nov. 9 News Star article.
In addition, the study, published in the Journal of Dental Research, found that seniors who wore their dentures to sleep were also more prone to tongue and denture plaque buildup as well as inflammation of the gums.
Plaque buildup is one of the biggest causes of periodontal, or gum disease — and can be a threat to one’s dental health even if the individual wears dentures. When periodontal disease is linked to heart disease, kidney disease and a number of other health complications, seniors who wear dentures can’t afford to take that risk.
So before you go to sleep tonight, be sure to remove your dentures first and clean them properly before wearing them again — it’s for your health!
Do you remove your dentures before you go to sleep? Why or why not? Share your thoughts and ask any questions you may have about your new dentures by leaving a comment below. Great references here. Get more on this here.