Denture Stomatitis: What Causes It and How to Manage It
Denture stomatitis is an inflammatory reaction in the mouth that appears as thrush or mouth sores. Denture stomatitis is common with denture wearers — hence the name. Below are some risk factors and management measures for the condition.
Denture stomatitis has multiple risk factors. Discover what some of them are.
Denture wearers are more likely to develop stomatitis than others. The dentures allow microorganisms to accumulate in the mouth. The microorganisms eventually attack the oral tissues and trigger stomatitis. Some denture wearers face an even higher risk than others. For example, you face a higher risk if:
• You have acrylic dentures that candida fungi have a high affinity for
• You wear ill-fitting dentures that irritate your mouth and make your oral tissues more susceptible to infections
• You wear complete dentures that provide a large surface area of contact between the denture material and your oral tissues
• You wear your dentures for extended periods, such as overnight
• You don’t clean your dentures as thoroughly or as often as you should
Generally, denture wearers who don’t follow their dentist’s instructions are at a higher risk of stomatitis.
Poor Oral Hygiene
Poor oral hygiene allows disease-causing organisms, including fungi that cause stomatitis, to accumulate in your mouth. The more the microorganisms spend in your mouth, the more you are likely to develop stomatitis.
Xerostomia, which refers to chronic dry mouth, denies your mouth valuable saliva. The saliva normally cleans the mouth to minimize microorganisms (including yeast) that causes infections. Thus, a dry mouth can indirectly lead to stomatitis.
Poorly managed diabetes causes a spike in blood sugar levels. High-blood sugar encourages yeast growth in some parts of the body, including the mouth. The yeast infection can eventually lead to stomatitis.
Some drugs also encourage stomatitis, although the exact association between the two is not clear. Steroids and some antibiotics are prime examples.
Denture stomatitis is prevalent in old age since most of the stomatitis risk factors are related to aging. For example, you are likely to wear dentures, be on medication, and experience chronic dry mouth as you age.
Treatment and Management
Denture stomatitis is treatable. Discover some treatment or management measures.
The best thing is to identify the triggers and deal with them. For example, if the issue is poor oral health (especially with dentures), you should:
• Brush at least twice daily
• Floss at least once daily
• Not wear your dentures overnight
• Soak and brush your dentures every day
In short, the measures will depend on the risk factors applicable to your case.
Oral Mouth Rinses
Applicable oral rinses, such as those with hexetidine, may also help. The antiseptic works against various microorganisms, including some fungi that trigger denture stomatitis. Ask your dentist for a recommendation on suitable oral rinses.
Your dentist may also prescribe topical applications of antifungal medicine, especially if you have a candida problem. The application should target parts of your mouth that your dentures cover. As with other forms of medication, inform your dentist about other medications you take to avoid the potential for unpleasant interactions.
In some cases, you might need laser treatment or surgery. In this case, your dentist will target low-energy laser at the inflamed tissues that harbor fungi.
Good oral hygiene plus regular dental exams can prevent most, but not all, dental problems. Thus, you might develop denture stomatitis even if your oral hygiene routine is impeccable. In such a case, contact Apollo Dental Center for a consultation and help. Our team of family dentists has decades of experience and promise you compassionate and professional care.