Although your dentures keep their shape, your mouth (like the rest of your body) is constantly changing. The bone which helps support the denture can recede and shrink away, or the shape of the mouth can change with age or loss of weight. As that happens, your denture can become loose or less stable. Ultimately it can impair your ability to chew, or begin to deepen the appearance of aging lines or wrinkles.
When dentures feel loose, many people resort to the use of adhesive powders or pastes to hold them in position. While these aids may be useful on a temporary basis when used carefully within the manufacturer’s guidelines, they should not be used routinely over an extended period of time. A loosening denture signifies that natural resorption of the bone has occurred. Even with an adhesive, prolonged use of the dentures in that condition will speed up the amount of bone loss. If your dentures are loose, please consult your Denturist about getting your denture relined. Only a professional Dentist or Denturist should reline a denture: never allow anyone else to alter or modify your denture.
There are 2 types of relines, soft and hard.
Soft relines are for dentures that cause extreme and constant irritation to the gums. They do not add another layer of material to bring the denture teeth down; instead, a soft reline fills in the gaps where your gums have shrunk. Soft relines are used to provide a cushion between the hard denture material and the soft tissue of the mouth. Soft relines may need to be redone every 6-12 months depending on the amount of wear.
Hard relines have the same hardness as your existing denture. They do not add another layer of material to bring the denture teeth down; instead, a hard reline fills in the gaps where your gums have shrunk. This hard reline material will not wear away, meaning that the change to the denture will last. Even so, you may need another hard reline as your gums continue to shrink or change shape again with time.