Like retainers and braces, dentures can be a source of bad breath. Far from being less likely to cause halitosis than real teeth, dentures entail a significant risk of oral odor, especially when left in overnight.
That is the conclusion of a recent study, anyway. Published in the journal Oral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology, Oral Radiology and Endodontology, the research found that elderly individuals are not more likely to have bad breath based on their age, gender, medication use or diagnoses of medical condition.
Instead, scientists determined that participants who had dry mouths or who wore their oral appliances while they slept had the greatest chances of experiencing halitosis.
The reason is simple. Dentures give oral bacteria more surface area on which they can live. While this may not matter so much during the day, when your mouth is producing antimicrobial saliva, at night the tongue and palate tend to dry out, leaving them open to a bacterial invasion.
Rinsing your mouth and false teeth with specialty breath freshening products, or using oral care probiotics, may help reduce the stench related to dentures.
Approximately 37 million Americans wear dentures, according to the journal Dental Economics.