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FAQ:  Gag Reflex



Question:
Top Denture makes me Gag: I have had had dentures for two years now.

I can wear my bottom one but every time I wear my top one, I gag no matter how long I try to keep them in.

I can not stop gagging. It gets so bad I vommit from it.

I have tried sucking on candy and swallowing alot and biting together and deep breathing but nothing works.

I really want my teeth back. What can I do?

Answer:
If you have had this problem of gagging from the time you received your dentures, it sounds like your dentist has not adjusted them fully.

From what you describe it sounds like the upper denture is a bit too long in the back of your mouth.

This post-palatal seal area is located where the hard roof of your mouth meets the flabby soft tissue leading down your throat. If the back of your denture is too long and goes beyond this hard palate/soft palate area, it causes gagging when you swollow and have it in.

If your top denture is sound otherwise, and is rententive and stays in well, your gagging problem may be solved by cutting back the denture to get it off your "soft" palate. The adjustments should be done a little at a time until the denture is comfortable to wear. If too much of the top denture is cut back, it may lose it's suction and start coming out too easily.

If your current dentist cannot solve your problem, I would find a dentist more experienced in removable dentures. There is also the option of having several dental implants placed that could help to hold in a top or bottom denture.

Once a person loses all their teeth, the jawbone can resorb and shrink away over the years making it hard to impossible to wear dentures. Another big advantage of a few titanium dental implants is that they will support loose dentures and keep the jawbone healthy by preventing the pressure necrosis (bone loss) of the dentures resting on the jawbone.

Editorial Staff

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