Professional cleaning should help improve longevity and comfort of appliances
BY Mickaela Olson
Denture patients have oral hygiene considerations that go beyond natural teeth. Partial and full-denture patients can benefit greatly from professional cleaning of their removable dentures during the hygiene session.
Professional cleaning of a removable partial or full denture can:
• Restore the appearance of a denture
• Provide an opportunity during an examination to reveal areas of the denture that may need modification
• Reduce microbial buildup on the removable dental appliance.
Attention to the denture also provides an opportunity to educate the patient on best practices for home care of the denture. In many cases, professional denture cleaning can be billed with a separate fee or added to the fee of routine cleaning. Some offices offer this as a free service as well.
When professionally cleaning a removable denture, it is important to take steps to prevent cross-contamination by using sterilizable or single-use containers. Use a cleaning solution that does not damage the appliance and is also effective in removing stains, deposits, and microbes.
Denture materials vary, and it is important to know exactly what materials are present in the denture before exposing the appliance to cleansers and procedures. Denture acrylics and conventional chrome-cobalt, gold, and titanium respond well to most available denture cleansing materials. Partial denture resins such as Valplast's flexible resin will not typically respond to conventional denture cleansing solutions. In the example cited, a specialized product such as Val-Clean Professional disinfecting cleanser is required.
The same is true for home care of specialized denture resins. Some metal alloys used in removable partial denture frames may also have components that react negatively to some denture cleansing solutions. So it is important to test first, and it is especially important to make sure that the patients' records specifically indicate which type and brand of materials are used for easier reference when determining how to clean the denture safely and effectively.
Valplast Supply Services offers products for patient home care as well as professional denture care. The products offered for professional denture care are designed for effective cleaning and disinfecting of Valplast Flexible Partials, acrylic full and partial dentures, retainers, night guards, and conventional metal and acrylic partials. The cleanser is not recommended for metal frames high in nickel content and should be used for only one minute per soak for dentures containing soft liners.
As a reminder, dental laboratories are required to keep records of all materials used that come in contact with the patient. Although these are not always disclosed to the dentist or patient, it is important to know what your patients are wearing so that you can maintain their appliances correctly and keep your patients smiling!
As a denture material manufacturer, Valplast is a few steps away from your dental patients' treatment experience. Yet, inside our corporate walls, we acknowledge and understand that, ultimately, the patient is the only individual who benefits from our product. It becomes our mission to recognize how we affect the patient so we can improve their restorative dental experience. We understand the trauma of losing natural teeth, and we aim to provide practitioners with the resources you need to put smiles back on your patients' faces.
We find that by putting ourselves in the shoes of the patients who are receiving flexible partials or full dentures, we can get a sense of how they feel emotionally through all stage of the process. This way we can evaluate our business practices and methods to ensure each patient is more than satisfied with the end result. As we pay attention to and analyze the growing trends of the dental industry and the way patients feel toward the dental industry as a whole, we are able to adapt to change and develop new technology to make the denture process easier, the end result better, and the patient happier. RDH
Mickaela Olson is a communications specialist with Valplast International Corporation and is based in Westbury, N.Y. For more information about the company's products, visit Valplast.com.