Dentures can be very uncomfortable to wear. Often this is due to poor fit, and getting dentures refit, especially using the Denture Fountain of Youth ® system, can be of great help in achieving a more comfortable experience. Other times, a soft liner can make the difference.
But for some people, these solutions are simply inadequate to help overcome the pain of dentures. Sjögren’s syndrome can cause such extreme dry mouth that it results in intolerable discomfort. Sometimes, implant dentures may represent the only practical solution.
What Is Sjögren’s Syndrome?
Sjögren’s syndrome is an autoimmune disorder. In this condition, your body attacks fluid-producing glands in your body, such as your salivary and tear glands. You might notice red, itchy eyes, a dry mouth, and irritated, scratchy throat that can make it hard to swallow.
A relatively small number of cases are diagnosed among younger adults and children. More often, the condition is diagnosed among older adults, typically after age 40. It is thought that in people who are genetically susceptible, exposure to some virus or bacteria stimulates the immune system into overactivity. This results in the immune system attacking your own tissues.
Sjögren’s syndrome can be treated with some medications. These can either suppress your immune system (which is risky as we get older) or stimulate production of saliva. If saliva production is still inadequate, your doctor might also recommend a saliva substitute.
Achieving a Comfortable Denture Solution
People with Sjögren’s syndrome are more likely to need dentures. The lack of saliva can make your teeth vulnerable to decay or increase the risk of gum disease. Unfortunately, despite this connection, we’re still a long way from having a comprehensive approach to ensuring denture comfort.
We can try the things mentioned above. Improving the fit of your dentures will go a long way toward ensuring comfortable dentures. And soft liners can work.
But if those don’t work, we will have to try implant dentures. It’s also important to note that you want to get implant-supported dentures, because implant-retained dentures will still allow too much pressure on your gums.
If you would like to learn more about achieving comfort with dentures, please call (803) 781-9090 for an appointment with a Columbia, SC denture dentist at Smile Columbia Dentistry.