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How long do permanent dentures last?

Permanent dentures, also known as complete dentures, are custom-made removable replacements for missing teeth. They are an affordable teeth replacement option that can restore your smile and allow you to eat comfortably. A common question regarding permanent dentures is how long they will last before needing to be replaced. There are many factors that determine the lifespan of a set of permanent dentures.

What are Permanent Dentures?

Permanent dentures are a complete set of artificial teeth that are custom-made to fit your mouth. They consist of an acrylic base that fits over your gums, and artificial teeth attached to the base. The base is pink to mimic natural gums. Permanent dentures can replace all upper, lower, or both upper and lower teeth that may be missing. They rely on suction to the gums and bone to stay in place. Some dentures also use dental adhesive for added stability.

There are two main types of permanent dentures:

  • Conventional dentures – The traditional form of complete dentures with an acrylic base. They are the more affordable option.
  • Implant-supported dentures – Dentures that attach to dental implants placed in the jawbone. Implants provide stability and can aid in retention.

Proper care is required to keep permanent dentures clean, disinfected, and maintained over time. Even with good care, they will eventually need to be repaired or replaced due to factors like changes in the gums and bone.

How Long Do Permanent Dentures Typically Last?

With regular use and proper maintenance, a set of properly fitted, high-quality permanent dentures can last 5-7 years or longer. However, this lifespan varies based on several factors:

Type of Dentures

Implant-supported dentures typically last longer than conventional dentures. Dental implants fuse to the jawbone, providing enhanced stability and retention. This reduces force and friction on the dentures compared to suction-only retention of conventional dentures. Less force means less wear and tear and increased longevity.

Quality of Dentures

High-quality dentures made by an experienced denturist using premium materials can last longer than poorly fitted, low-quality dentures. Customization and using resilient acrylics gives dentures greater durability and longevity.

Oral Health

Good oral hygiene and dental care help permanent dentures last longer. Keeping your mouth clean and getting regular dental checkups prevents buildup of plaque and tartar that can deteriorate dentures. Gum disease can cause bone loss, affecting the fit and retention of dentures over time.

Care and Maintenance

Proper care is key for longevity. Thoroughly cleaning dentures daily, using cleaners and soaks helps prevent buildup and staining. Avoid using harsh chemicals like bleach that can damage the acrylic. Store dentures in water when not in use so they retain their shape.

Lifestyle Factors

Heavy grinding or clenching can put excess force on dentures and cause them to wear faster. Diet is also a factor. Eating sticky, hard, or chewy foods can dislodge dentures. Sugary and acidic foods increase risk for decay and erosion if good oral hygiene isn’t maintained.

Amount of Use

How often you wear your dentures will affect how long they last. Dentures worn only occasionally may last longer just from less overall use. Full-time denture wearers who use their dentures all day, every day will require replacement sooner.

Age of Wearer

Younger denture wearers may require new dentures more frequently than older wearers because of ongoing changes to their gum ridges and bone structure as they age. Younger wearers may need relining or replacement after 5 years, while older wearers may go longer between adjustments.

Signs You May Need New Dentures

You should consider new dentures if you notice any of the following signs:

  • Looseness – Dentures don’t feel snug and shift when eating or talking.
  • Rubbing or sores – Lack of proper fit causes rubbing and irritation.
  • Difficulty chewing – Food gets trapped under dentures or slippage causes difficulty chewing.
  • Cracked, bent or warped base – A damaged base can lead to bone loss.
  • Staining or odors – Daily cleaning can’t remove stains or odors.
  • Aging appearance – Gums or acrylic appear aged or worn.

Your denturist can assess the fit and condition of your dentures at least once per year and recommend replacement when necessary.

How to Make Your Dentures Last Longer

You can help maximize the lifespan of your dentures with these care tips:

  • Clean daily – Brush with non-abrasive toothpaste and soak in cleanser to prevent buildup.
  • Avoid harsh chemicals – Use recommended cleansers instead of bleach, peroxide, etc.
  • Store properly – Keep dentures moist when not worn to prevent warping.
  • Visit your denturist – Get assessed yearly or if dentures become loose or damaged.
  • Get relines – Have relining done as needed to improve fit as your gums change.
  • Protect from impact – Use a soft bristle brush and remove dentures before contact sports.
  • Quit smoking – Smoking stains dentures and increases bone loss.

Cost of Replacement Dentures

The cost for replacement dentures depends on the type you need:

Denture Type Estimated Cost
Conventional complete dentures (per arch) $300-$3,000
Implant-supported overdenture (per arch) $500-$15,000+
Reline (per denture) $150-$400

Talk to your denturist about payment plans and insurance coverage to help manage replacement costs. Proper care and maintenance of your current set can help minimize how often replacements are needed.


Can dentures last a lifetime?

It is rare for dentures to last a lifetime. With regular relining and repairs, well-cared for dentures may last 10-15 years or more, but most will need at least one replacement over your lifetime.

Do teeth wear out dentures?

Natural teeth or dental implants don’t directly wear down dentures. However, bone loss from aging and other factors affects the fit and retention of dentures over time, eventually requiring replacement.

Can dentures be repaired?

Yes, minor chips, cracks, and breakage can often be repaired instead of fully replaced. However, significant damage or ill-fitting dentures will likely need replacement.

Do new dentures feel tight?

New dentures may feel tight at first because your mouth needs time to adjust to them. As you wear them, your gums and bone will adapt to the new dentures and pressure points will ease.

Can I sleep with dentures in?

You should remove and thoroughly clean your dentures before bed. Leaving them in increases risk for bacterial overgrowth, fungal infections, and damage to the dentures. Discuss options like a soft reline material with your denturist if dentures are uncomfortable to remove at night.


With proper care and maintenance, high quality permanent dentures can last 5-7 years or longer before needing replacement. However, factors like oral health, lifestyle, fit, and amount of wear will affect longevity. See your denturist regularly to keep your dentures in optimal condition. Implementing good oral hygiene and denture care practices can help ensure your dentures last as long as possible.