When you lose your natural teeth to decay, periodontal disease or injury, dentures are the most common solution. Although they improve your appearance and allow you to chew food, dentures require a fair amount of extra maintenance. If you do not properly clean them, they can easily stain or form black lines on their surface. With proper care and cleaning, however, you can get rid of black lines on your dentures.
Brush, soak and brush again. Most black lines resulting from food stains will easily lighten or disappear with a little elbow grease. Brush first to remove any loose food particles. Soak your dentures in an effervescent, or fizzy, denture cleaner according to package instructions. Brush again with toothpaste using a small-head toothbrush until the black lines are gone. Scrub gently to avoid wearing grooves on the surface of your dentures.
Use hand soap or dish-washing liquid. These soaps can also be effective in removing black lines from dentures. Gently scrub the soap into your stained dentures with the toothbrush, using a circular motion until the lines disappear.
Try bleach if other cleaners do not work. Although many dentists warn against using bleach since it may discolor the pink portion of the denture, it is often an effective way to remove black lines. Mix one teaspoon of bleach into one cup of water and soak your dentures for one hour. Rinse thoroughly before putting them back in your mouth to protect your gums from unnecessary irritation.
Use hydrogen peroxide as an alternative. Soak your dentures in hydrogen peroxide for one hour, then rinse well and brush them with soap, toothpaste or dental cleaner to remove the black lines.
Consider an ultrasonic denture cleaner. Ultrasonic cleaners range in price from $50-$150 and work well to remove stains and black lines from dentures.
If none of these methods fully remove black lines from your dentures, see your dentist for a professional cleaning.
Always clean your dentures over a sink full of water or a washcloth to avoid dropping and breaking them.