What it’s like wearing my new metal partial dentures

What a weird topic to post about, right? To coincide with Steemfest I decided to get my dentures done in Bangkok, since I already have accommodations in Bangkok it was cheaper to have my partial dentures done in Bangkok rather than in Chiang Mai where I had all my previous dental work done. Yup, it’s all about cost cutting. Anyways, if you’re interested in a dental holiday, consider coming to Thailand. HERE’s my post about my dental work done in Chiang Mai. My last dental appointment/checkup in Bangkok is next week so the post regarding the clinic will be forthcoming.

Now the point of this post is to try and help anyone who is thinking about or about to get partial dentures but even after reading loads of stuff on Google, is still unsure about what it’s going to be like . . . Here’s my experience, hope it helps!

I’ve never had dentures before and had to Google the pros and cons of partial dentures before deciding to get the metal one as opposed to a fully acrylic one. I know it looks kinda gross, but it’s hard to explain without seeing it.

After agreeing the consultation and my agreeing for service, the dentist started making grooves / attachment points on my existing teeth then makes molds of my upper and lower teeth. So those metal hook looking things are what’s going to ‘clip’ onto my teeth to hold the dentures in place. It doesn’t look very secure but it fits snugly and securely because on the other side the acrylic is molded so your gums sit snugly in the groove. I haven’t had my partial dentures fall out or become dislodged yet and I can’t dislodge them using my tongue.

So it’s been 5 days since I’ve had my partial dentures fitted and frankly, it kinda sucks. The first day it was just a weird feeling and I found myself speaking a bit weird although everyone said they didn’t notice any speech impairment. It was neither painful nor uncomfortable putting in the partial dentures nor taking them out. The first thing I did after I left the dental clinic was find something to eat. My dentist (as well as everything I read on Google) recommends starting out with soft food so I figured rice with some thinly sliced beef should be ok. Just my luck, I was passing a Japanese restaurant so I ordered a beef don. My dentures wiggled a bit and see sawed if I only chewed on one side. Food seemed to be everywhere in my mouth. Even after swallowing the mouth full of food, it still feels like there’s food everywhere, much like sand in your swim suit. I think it’s because food catches on the ridges of the acrylic (top of the groove) as well as between the metal and the roof of your mouth. Having a glass of water on hand is helpful to rinse your mouth but for me nothing but a full on gargle gets the bits out.  Not something I’d recommend doing in a restaurant. I remember thinking, this feels so weird but at least it’s not painful. Later on, I decided to have McDonald’s for my “midnight snack,” I couldn’t even eat a fry, it was really painful to chew on both sides. So I waited until I got home to eat. After taking out the dentures, I ate my upsized meal without any issues, no soreness or pain anywhere. Weird, right?

Day two…putting on the dentures sucked. There was a slight pinch of pain when the clamps clamp on one particular tooth and I could feel the soreness around that tooth but it quickly went away. Chewing hurts and the pain is contingent on how much bite force I use. I’m pretty sure my denture is not sitting on my gums because with no food in my mouth I can bite down and there’s no pain at all but even biting a Pringles chip causes discomfort depending on how hard I bite. It’s been days now and still the same so I’ve pretty much resigned my self to eating noodles cuz those are the least painful (udon is the best, it’s thick but soft and there’s enough resistance so you can feel the bite and adjust). If I can’t find any noodles then it’s rice.

Having the dentures in my mouth doesn’t feel awkward or unnatural. For me, it’s only the metal bar across the roof of my mouth that I can feel and since the plate is narrow and slim it doesn’t feel like it taking up space. I suppose over time, I wouldn’t even notice it’s there. Does my partial denture make me feel like gagging? No. Although once, on the first day, right after I left the clinic and was waiting for my food, I was using my tongue to ‘fidget’ with the dentures and that brought on a gag reflex. Needless to say, I don’t do that anymore.

The wiggling around of the dentures while chewing can feel disconcerting which is probably why there’s denture glue? At the moment I’ve found that taking smaller bites than normal and trying to chew evenly, as in have food on both sides of my mouth to even out the pressure helps prevent my dentures from wiggling to the point where I wonder if they are going to get displaced. Smaller bites also helps me to remember not to bite so hard. I don’t notice any temperature difference of the metal (or acrylic) when I’m eating hot or cold foods either.

The care and cleaning of my partial dentures is what gives me the most problems, my dentist said, “just soak in water when you take out at night and brush them (regular toothpaste is fine) before you put them back in, in the morning. Also best to take them out and rinse them after each meal.” Yeah, I’m not taking them out after each meal when I’m out but honestly there has been times when I really felt like I needed to. A few discreet gargles solved that problem. There’s so many conflicting info on how to “properly” clean dentures, that I gave up reading and just did what I feel like. My routine is so far is, I take them out, rinse them off with water, (it’s really amazing how much “stuff” I can rinse off. It’s pretty gross, haha). I then brush them (as part of the 2 minute per quarter cycle of my electric toothbrush) then dip them mouthwash (Listerine) for a bit then rinse and store with plain water. In the morning I take them out, rinse with water, then mouthwash, then brush them. Oh I usually use alcohol free mouthwash but I bought the wrong one this time and I don’t really know how big a difference that makes.

Anyways, I figured I’d add my 2 cents in on this topic since I can relate to the apprehension, even though I read up on it and had gotten solid advice from my bro, who’s a dentist. He recommends that I just use the partial dentures but it’s such a pain, literally but it is nice to have a fuller set of teeth though. Anyways, I’m hoping I’ll get used to the pain soon or the the pain will go away, if not, I’m not entirely sure I won’t stop using them.

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