Quiz: Are your dentures healthy?

By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

Dentures have come a long way from the horse teeth of past, when they were made from, well, horses' teeth. And whether you're being fitted for a few replacement teeth or a whole-mouth set, wearing dentures has benefits and can return your mouth to its former glory. See if what you know about false teeth is true or false.

"Waterloo teeth" refers to a revolutionary denture technology developed around the time of the Battle of Waterloo to repair soldiers' teeth.

Waterloo teeth were actually teeth taken from dead soldiers and made into dentures for the living.


Dental implants replace missing teeth one tooth at a time and cost a lot less than a partial set of dentures.

Implants are attached in the mouth a tooth at a time, but they are far more expensive than dentures, costing about $3,000 to $4,500 per tooth and tens of thousands for a partial or full set.


Powdered dishwasher soap is not recommended for cleaning dentures.

Dish soap diluted in water is an effective denture cleaner, but other household cleaners, particularly abrasive ones, can damage dentures.


A really custom-fit, quality set of dentures can last a lifetime.

Aging and changes in gum tissue affect the fit, comfort and effectiveness of dentures, making it necessary for adjustments and replacements over time. Getting a "custom fit" is necessary as the mouth changes.


Bleach removes stains and can be used to soak dentures at least daily.

Using bleach or products with bleach will make the pink part of dentures -- designed to look like real gums -- white.


Dental cleanings increase once you become a denture wearer.

They stay about the same, with cleanings and checkups recommended every six months.


Toothpaste and dentures don’t mix.

Most toothpastes are too abrasive for denture care and can wear down the surfaces more quickly.


Some dentures are far stronger than natural teeth.

Tooth enamel is much, much stronger than the acrylic, resin and plastics used for dentures, and due to their thinness and fine workmanship, dentures actually need to be handled with considerable care. Dropping them even inches can make them crack or shatter.


Animal teeth were too unhygienic to have much of a history in the development of modern dentures.

Horse and donkey teeth, among others, were cut down and made into human dentures for centuries.


Denture adhesives are the only way to get a really secure, tight fit that won’t slip while the wearer is talking or eating.

Adhesives serve a short-term purpose and help with fit while the wearer is getting used to dentures or new adjustments. But using an adhesive to make an ill-fitting denture stay in the mouth is not advisable because it can lead to mouth soreness and gum problems.


George Washington had wooden teeth because he couldn’t afford the more expensive kind made from animal teeth.

Washington had many sets of dentures fashioned in his lifetime, but none were not made of wood. He had the luxury of being able to afford sets made from the ivory tusks of hippopotamuses, as well as other materials.


"Step away from that toothpick!" Good advice for a denture wearer?

Sharp objects and even crunchy food can damage dentures and hurt gums. Natural teeth are far more sensitive to touch, while dentures lack feeling and control in steering foreign objects away from soft gum tissues.


Periodontitis, or gum disease, is mostly a risk for those with partial dentures and some natural teeth and not for many people with full dentures.

Gum disease is troublesome for many who wear partial dentures because some natural teeth and gums are harder to clean due to attachments and appliances keeping dentures in place. Those with full dentures continue to be at risk for periodontitis and should massage, clean and maintain gum health to ensure that dentures fit well and gums do not shrink or weaken.


Getting dentures can make your face more attractive.

Dentures -- whether partial or full -- support the structure of a person's individual and unique bite and facial bone structure. Often, getting dentures means correcting problems with shifted or missing teeth, and the manmade replacements can fill out the face and restore muscle support, enhancing appearance.


New technologies make it possible to wear dentures 24/7, even while sleeping.

Manmade technologies continue to improve, but you still have to give your gums a break overnight.


Ten years is a long time in the life of dentures.

Five years is even a long life depending on how many changes are taking place in the mouth and jaw and how well the dentures themselves are cared for.


It is an urban legend that impoverished people used to sell their own teeth and their children's for the denture market.

It's true.


Similar to repairing eye glasses, with the right tool kit most small denture repairs can be do-it-yourself.

All repairs need to go through a dental professional or serious damage to the dentures can occur.


A dental bridge is removable; a partial denture is not.

Both bridges and partials can be fixed or removable.


Dentists generally advise removing problem teeth to save a patient money and pain.

Most dentists are trained to focus on saving teeth if at all possible.


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