Sunday, April 29, 2012

Dirty Dentures? Dangerous MRSA May Be Lurking

American College of Prosthodontists 
Here’s some bad news for the estimated 20 million people in the U.S. who wear full or partial dentures: There’s a good chance your choppers are covered with thin layers of icky, sticky bacteria known as biofilms.
Worse, some of the biofilm germs may be bad bugs such as MRSA, or drug-resistant staphylococcus aureus bacteria, which can lurk on the dentures until they’re breathed into the lungs, where experts fear they may cause nasty, hard-to-treat infections.
Fortunately, a team of scientists in Brazil has come up with two simple solutions that seem to work: Zap your dentures in the microwave for three minutes, or soak them in a solution of 2 percent chlorhexidine gluconate, (ie- Peridex), a germicidal mouthwash, for 10 minutes. But dentures that contain metal shouldn’t go in the microwave and the harsh chemical rinse might be too strong for daily use.
A third option, soaking the dentures in sodium hypochlorite, was effective only in the short term.
But the microwave approach, which zaps dentures with 650 watts, may be novel.
We do know there are links between the bacteria in the mouth and systemic effects throughout the body.
Concern about biofilms on dentures is growing as researchers continue to identify links between oral bacteria and heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD, and respiratory diseases, including aspiration pneumonia.
 Dentures act as kind of a reservoir for the biofilms, allowing bacteria within them to multiply and thrive. Bacteria and yeast can embed themselves in the porous acrylic material of the dentures.
When people get cuts or lesions in their mouths, the bacteria from the biofilms can migrate into those tiny wounds, leading to systemic illness.

There are still a lot of patients who have gone 30 years wearing their old dentures. Studies have shown many denture wearer's don’t clean /scub them well. They just take them out & rinse them in the shower.
Instead, denture-wearers should wash their false teeth daily, with a stiff brush and soap and water, not toothpaste.
The mechanical action works better, You really need to scrub., Follow with a mouthwash rinse to make them taste better. In addition, it is recommened to brush the inside of your cheeks, palate & tongue.
As dentists, we also recommend when someone has a cold or flu to replace their toothbrush.”

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