Division of Oral Health Fact Sheet

Caring for Your Dentures

It is important to clean your mouth and denture daily so your mouth will stay healthy. Soaking dentures in water or a denture cleaner is not enough. They must be brushed with a soft toothbrush or with a toothbrush made especially for dentures.

Be sure to brush and massage your gums daily with a soft toothbrush, and brush any remaining natural teeth you may have.

  • Do not clean dentures with boiling water.
  • Clean all denture surfaces, both inside and outside, with a denture brush and denture cleaner that you can buy at a drug store. Do not use an abrasive cleaning powder like Ajax™ or Comet™.
  • When cleaning dentures, hold over a bowl of water between your thumb and forefinger. If the denture slips out of your hand, it will land in the water and not break.
  • If a denture smells, it can be soaked in a solution of 1 teaspoon of bleach (such as Clorox™) in 1 cup of water. Soak the denture for 30 minutes. Rinse well before putting it back in your mouth.
  • Take your denture out of your mouth for at least eight hours every day. When out of your mouth, keep the denture in a bowl of water or diluted mouthwash.
  • Do not try to adjust a denture with sandpaper or files. This will ruin the denture.
  • Do not use denture liners or denture adhesives.

Go to the dentist for the following:

  • Your regular fitting appointments after you get a denture
  • When you have mouth sores that last for more than one week
  • When your dentures become loose in your mouth
  • One time a year to check the health of your mouth and the fit of your denture

For more information, contact

Illinois Department of Public Health, Division of Oral Health
535 W. Jefferson St., Springfield, IL 62761
217-785-4899, TTY (hearing impaired use only) 800-547-0466

NOTE: This fact sheet was derived from one previously published by the Arizona Department of Health Services.

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Oral Health Home

Illinois Department of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977
Fax 217-782-3987
TTY 800-547-0466
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