How big is your smile? It probably depends on the cause of your smile, but you are no doubt used to the fact that, when you smile, you only reveal a certain amount of teeth. Those with a new set of dentures or a set that has recently been repaired might be surprised to discover that their smile can suddenly be much larger than it previously was, with a greater amount of teeth being displayed. It can feel like your teeth are in fact more prominent, and this might be the case. Denture vertical dimension occlusion (VDO) can occur when the dentures have been constructed in a size that is too large for your mouth, or have undergone repairs that have resulted in the same issue. So aside from a toothier smile than usual, what are some signs that you need to be aware of when it comes to VDO?
Mouth Too Full
It might simply be that your mouth feels too full. You are used to your teeth closing in a certain way and this is something that is natural and comfortable for your jaw. If your mouth feels too full and this sensation remains even after you've had time to become used to the dentures, then there might be an issue that warrants further investigation.
In addition to the sensation that your mouth is too full, you might begin to experience an aching jaw. This can occur because your jaw muscles have become strained with the placement of the new set of dentures. In addition to a generalised jaw ache, you might also experience discomfort in your temporomandibular joint, which connects your jawbone to your skull.
Chewing and Swallowing
You might also notice discomfort when chewing and swallowing food, related to the fact that you are now using teeth that feel as though they're larger than they were prior to using the new or repaired dentures.
An Easy Repair
VDO can be an annoyance, but it can very easily be remedied by denture repairs. It is simply that your denture palate (the pink section that the prosthetic teeth are attached to) has been made too thick. It's a very straightforward type of denture repair and the palate is simply rebased, with a fraction of its base removed for a more appropriate fit.
The discomfort of VDO is not something that needs to be endured, so please consult your dentist if you should have any concerns or believe that your dentures might be affected.