Often the target of jokes about aging, wearing dentures is a practice that has unfortunately been stigmatized in today’s society.
What causes the stigma, though, and why should it go away? Let’s take a look at both in today’s post.
Where Does the Stigma Come From?
Bring up the topic of dentures, and many people think it directly related to aging, and that dentures are only for the elderly. In fact, in a survey conducted by Survata called Biting Into Denture Care, 59% of respondents felt that dentures are only for grandparents. Yet of all the respondents, 53% actually first got dentures when they were 44 years old or younger! Likely because of this disparity, 63% of the survey-takers also admitted to hiding their dentures from friends and loved ones, sometimes even their spouse.
These statistics point to feelings of shame and embarrassment. Some of the shame may result from the misconception that needing dentures is a sign of neglected oral hygiene, or lack of personal care. All of these factors lead to a stigma against wearing dentures.
How the Stigma Attached to Denture-Wearing is Damaging
The truth is there many reasons someone might require either full or partial dentures, none of which have to do with poor oral hygiene. Sports injuries or car accidents can both be the cause of dental trauma, for example. Health conditions such as osteoporosis and cancer treatment can also cause premature tooth loss. Each of these causes result through no fault of the patient; losing their teeth is literally out of their control. There could be other reasons for tooth loss as well, such as genetics and other health conditions. The bottom line is that for a wide number of reasons, people lose their teeth. Given that adults only have one set of teeth, and that our teeth are so vital to everyday quality of life, it’s crucial to have a solution.
Fortunately, dentures offer a great solution, and restore function so that people dealing with various circumstances can get back some normalcy. The damaging aspect of stigmatized denture-wearing is that some people who could be helped by being fitted with a denture device, won’t reach out for that help. Or they may suffer for years before finding a solution. Most of us wouldn’t think twice about taking a pain pill for a headache. It’s an easy, proven, solution to a common problem. Likewise, eliminating the stigma around dentures would allow people who need a dental solution to reach out and get the help they need, without shame.
Turn to Mark’s Dentures
Knowing you’re not alone helps to dispel shame and embarrassment. There are far more people than you know wearing dentures, and living quality lives. Here at Mark’s Dentures, we treat our patients with the utmost care and respect, ensuring both privacy and dignity. Located in Holladay, Utah, we have an entire on-site lab to help provide the care you need, and to keep your dentures fitting and feeling great. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for a free consultation, and see what we can do for you!