If you have been dealing with unhealthy teeth, you know that you can get sinus infections as a result. The good news is that your dentures will likely not cause the same problems.

young woman blowing her nose, laying on couch. Maybe a sinus infection?

Why Poor Oral Health Causes Sinus Infections

Sinus infections occur when bacteria or viruses invade your sinuses–air spaces in your skull. This happens because the bones that secure your teeth and support your gums are directly adjacent to the sinuses. Infection can spread through the bone, which is permeable, but infection can also damage your bones. In gum disease, the bacteria attack the bones around your teeth, and can eventually penetrate through to the sinuses.

More likely is that an infected tooth will give oral bacteria a “shortcut” into your sinuses. The infection fills the tooth and emerges from the root canals to attack the bone at the root of the tooth, eventually penetrating into the sinuses.

Traditional Dentures Reduce Risk of Sinus Infections

If you have your teeth removed and get traditional dentures, you’ll probably see a reduction or even elimination of your sinus infections. That’s because dentures rest on top of your gums. Once your teeth are removed, your gums will heal into a solid seal to keep oral bacteria out of your bones and sinuses.

You can help avoid infections by taking your dentures out at night and soaking them to ensure they stay clean.

To ensure healthy bones and avoid the risk of infections, it’s vital to get properly fitted dentures that balance the forces in your bite. If your bite is imbalanced, some places in your gums can experience excessive force, which can cause gum sores that, if left untreated, can reach to the bone and allow bacteria to penetrate. This can potentially cause sinus infections.

More often, it will result in a different kind of sinus infection: it will create spaces under your skin that fill with pus and fluid. These facial sinuses can be uncomfortable and unattractive. Again, properly fitted dentures that are properly cleaned can help you avoid this side effect.

What about Dental Implants and Sinus Infections?

Implant dentures are a great way to ensure your dentures work like natural teeth. They can also decrease your risk of denture sores because they support your dentures rather than letting your dentures rest on your gums.

But dental implants do carry a small risk of sinus infections. Dental implants are placed in the same bone where your natural teeth were. They’re placed so that there is plenty of bone separating them from your sinuses. Sometimes this may require the addition of bone in the sinuses (sinus augmentation) to provide sufficient anchorage and spacing.

If a dental implant is not properly placed, it may penetrate your sinuses, causing a risk of infection and other problems. Also, if you don’t take proper care of your dental implants, they can become infected, and sometimes the infection can dissolve the bone, resulting in sinus infections.

Quality Dentures, Skilled Dentist, Careful Maintenance

Fortunately, sinus infections related to dentures are unusual, and serious infections are very rare. If you invest in quality dentures, work with a skilled dentist, and take proper care of your dentures, you will be happy with your dentures and likely won’t experience this kind of problem.

To learn more about quality dentures, please call (803) 781-9090 today for an appointment with a Columbia, SC denture dentist at Smile Columbia Dentistry.