Dentures That Taste like Plastic or Taste Funny
while most of your taste buds are located on your tongue, a few are found on the roof of your mouth (palate). Wearing a full upper denture covers some of these taste buds and puts the taste buds on the tip and edges of your tongue in contact with the acrylic plate of your upper denture. Regardless of what you eat during the first few days of getting used to your new dentures, your brain will detect that “plastic” taste and combine it with other tastes.
Fortunately, this is just a short-term problem. After a while, your brain and taste buds adapt to the minor interference presented by your dentures and that funny taste vanishes. Nerve receptors involved with taste will naturally start to focus more on the foods you put in your mouth and ultimately ignore your dentures.
For new denture wearers, it’s mostly the ability to taste sweet foods that’s affected, since the palate contains “sweet” receptors. Alternately, your tongue contains many “salty” receptors. This is why people adjusting to new dentures may not be able to taste sweet foods as well as they can taste salty foods.
Aging, Dentures and Taste
Taste buds naturally decline in their ability to detect food sensations as we age. This decline is so gradual, however, that we tend not to notice it. If you are over 60 and still experience altered taste sensations even after adjusting to new dentures, it could be that your taste buds are simply “getting old.”
Talk to your dentist if you’re concerned about your ability to taste, or see your primary care physician to determine if something else is interfering with the functioning of your taste buds.
Reduced Taste and Cleaning Your Dentures
Neglecting to thoroughly clean your dentures may affect the way food tastes. When food debris remains on dentures, bacteria break down this debris and excrete substances that not only smell bad, but taste terrible, too. Brushing your dentures twice a day and soaking them in a denture-cleaning fluid at night may help reduce or eliminate unwanted taste sensations.
Eating With New Dentures
It takes a little time to get used to new dentures. In addition to your taste buds adjusting to dentures, you may have problems sensing how hot food is, so be careful when consuming hot drinks or foods.
During the first week of wearing your new dentures, eat mostly soft or semi-solid foods like eggs, cooked vegetables, chopped meats, fish and pudding. You will naturally gain more confidence as you eat with your dentures and eventually move on to harder, crunchier foods. Using denture adhesives when eating food that requires extra biting forces (corn on the cob, for example) helps protect your oral health against bacteria and food particles, the two primary reasons for halitosis and altered taste sensations in denture wearers.