How to Know If You Need Denture Adjustment, Repair or Replacement

If your dentures are loose, slide, rub or are simply uncomfortable, then it may be time for a change.

However, how do you know if you need a simple adjustment, a slight repair or a full-on replacement?

How should your dentures fit?

Dentures are used to replace missing teeth. Their purpose is to allow you to eat, speak, laugh and smile just as you would if your original teeth were still healthy and present. If the dentures are hindering any of these activities, then there is a chance something is wrong.

Traditional dentures should fit in the mouth and not slide or irritate the gums. Partial dentures that fit well will line up with the natural teeth with minimal movement. For full dentures, the top should suction smoothly to the gum, while the bottom should float just above the gum.

The bite should be strong and comfortable. If your dentures do not fit as they should, it is time to schedule a visit with the dentist.

When should dentures be fixed?

If you have problems with your dentures, try to resolve them immediately. Ignoring a small problem can quickly become a much larger issue.

Ignoring a minor repair can turn into a nightmare. You might experience discomfort, painful mouth sores, cuts and have a hard time eating and speaking.

Make an appointment with a dentist if you notice any of the following:

  • Changes in fit, whether tighter or looser
  • Mouth sores
  • Bleeding or swelling of the gums
  • Your facial structure starts to change
  • Stains or bad breath
  • Jaw or gum soreness
  • Changes in speech

The dentist will look at your mouth, bones and the dentures to determine the problem. They can say if an adjustment, repair or full replacement of the dentures is required.


Never try to repair dentures at home. You might only need a slight adjustment to stop the discomfort. However, a poor attempt can result in a much more costly repair or even replacement. Small accidents like dropping your dentures can create a need for adjustment. The dentist may fix the lining or other parts of the dentures to help create a better fit.


Chips or cracks in the dentures require immediate repair. Left alone, sharp and uneven surfaces can cut the soft tissue in your mouth, irritate the gums and grow larger.

This damage can get worse over time. A simple repair now is better than a full replacement if the damage is ignored.


You typically need to replace your dentures every 10 years if you take care of them properly. Over time, they will stain and discolor regardless of how well you care for them.

While chips and cracks often only require a repair, a severe fracture will require a total replacement. The longer a small problem is overlooked, the sooner a full replacement will become necessary.

Do your dentures fit well?

If you are concerned that your dentures need an adjustment, repair or replacement, then there is only one thing to do next.

Call and schedule a consultation to ensure that your dentures are not doing more harm than good.

Request an appointment here: or call Charles Ashley Mann, DDS & Associates at (919) 462-9338 for an appointment in our Cary office.

Check out what others are saying about our denture care services on Yelp: Denture Care.

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