Management and prevention of denture loss

Guidelines for preventing and managing denture loss in hospitals and community residential settings

These guidelines have been developed to set the standards which hospital trusts and community residential settings should follow in order to reduce and manage denture loss experienced by patients and residents.

These guidelines are available on the mouth care matters e-learning for healthcare (e-lfh) page and are an addition to existing local mouth care policies and resources available from the Mouth Care Matters programme. The guidelines are available for all health and social care professionals and apply to all colleagues who provide care to hospital and community residential setting service users. To download these resources, individuals must register with an email address to create an e-lfh account. Using an NHS email address will provide access to all the available modules on the e-learning for healthcare platform, but a non-NHS email address will enable access to Mouth Care Matters and its Mini MCM counterpart.

Denture loss is often underreported in Hospital and Community Residential Settings due to a lack of standardised prevention or management policies regarding denture loss.

The guidelines and summary ‘safe denture care’ trifold leaflet have been produced in response to the detrimental impact denture loss can have on vulnerable patients and to minimise the significant distress it may cause to these patients and their families.

The guidelines outline:

  • Strategies for hospital and community settings to prevent denture loss.
  • Approaches for managing denture loss.
  • Factors which increase the risk of denture loss.

Key steps that hospital and community staff can take to prevent denture loss include:

  • Undertaking mouth care assessments as a part of general patient care.
  • Educating staff, patients, carers and families on the importance of oral health, including dentures.
  • Implementing crucial denture storage and labelling protocols.

These guidelines will help to empower staff with the information needed to deal with denture loss, which includes following necessary reporting and recording mechanisms, routes of replacement and reimbursement, and supporting patients who may have lost dentures.