Your Denture Cleaner Could Be Poisoning You!
If you wear dentures you're familiar with the hassles that come with them: they fall out, they don't let you eat your favorite foods we could go on with that list all day. One thing you probably never considered were the denture cleaning tablets you keep in your bathroom, but if they have one critical ingredient you can add them to that list of denture hassles!
That ingredient is called persulfate. It's an incredibly effective cleaning agent, but it's also highly toxic. We don't want any of our Waterford area denture patients to fall prey to its effects, so we've written this blog to pass along some critically important knowledge.
Persulfate Allergies Are Common
Have you ever experienced redness, rashes, or sore gums from wearing your dentures? There's a good chance it's just due to some simple irritation, but it could also be caused by persulfate. Allergic reactions to persulfate are common, and they're easily missed since they aren't unique.
Common allergic reactions to persulfate include:
- Minor tissue damage
- Rashes, bumps, and redness
- Tenderness in the gums
- Lowered blood pressure
- Trouble breathing
Those symptoms don't exactly scream my denture cleaner must be toxic, so they get overlooked a lot. You should always be rinsing your dentures off before you put them in, and doing so makes people even less likely to think the cleaner is the cause. Many patients have been shocked to discover they're allergic to persulfate, but once they realize it they quickly find their quality of life with dentures improves!
In Case Of Accidental Ingestion
Okay, we're not crazy persulfate denture cleaning tablets have been ingested and they can do serious damage. Persulfate poisoning has some really bad symptoms that require an immediate trip to the hospital. You don't want to mess around with this stuff!
If you ingest persulfate you can expect to experience:
- Tissue burns
- Internal bleeding
- Intense stomach pain
- Blood in your urine
- Trouble breathing
- Critically low blood pressure
- Loss of consciousness
Cases of persulfate ingestion have included mistaking a tablet for alka seltzer, mistaking them for other antacids, or children thinking they're candy. In many of those cases the end result was fatal not something you think about when cleaning your dentures in the evening.
If you currently use a persulfate cleaner you can continue to do so, but be sure you're taking the right steps to protect yourself and anyone else who might run into it in the bathroom.
- Make sure your denture cleaning tablets are kept in a very specific place. This prevents confusion when trying to find antacids like alka seltzer or Tums.
- Keep your denture cleaner stored safely out of the reach of children, or otherwise secured in a safe area.
- When you soak your dentures don't do it in an open top cup get a specialized container that will keep them safe and prevent you or anyone else from accidentally taking a gulp of it.
Alternatives To Persulfate Denture Cleaners
With all this doom and gloom about the most common form of denture cleaner you're probably wondering what you can do about it. Luckily avoiding persulfate doesn't have to be that hard there are several brands that make persulfate-free denture cleaner! Next time you're at the drugstore or grocery store make sure to take a look at the active ingredients each one has. Fresh Guard and Dentasoak are two popular brands that are also perfectly safe.
In addition to persulfate-free cleaners you can also get wonderfully fresh and clean dentures using some liquid castile soap. You can find this olive oil based product in most supermarkets, and just a small measure of it will get your dentures fresh and clean completely naturally.
You Can Clean Your Dentures And Be Safe
These precautions apply to patients who wear partial dentures, standard dentures, and even implant supported dentures. If your teeth come out at night you need to be aware of the risks your denture cleaner could pose!
That said, we're always here for you at The Waterford Dentist. If you ever have questions about your dentures, your denture cleaner, the safety of the products and chemicals that clean your teeth and gums, or anything else about your oral health you can always reach out to us.