Why Missing Teeth Should be Replaced

Jesse Greaves DMD - Friday, April 20, 2018 | Comments (0)


As dental technology has increased over the years, we have begun to see fewer and fewer people with missing teeth. Still, there are people who would lose a tooth and not think much of it. In reality, a missing tooth can be much more serious than a gap in your smile. A missing tooth can have serious oral health effects later in the future.

Bones can be similar to muscles in the way that if you do not use them, they begin to atrophy. The bones in your mouth are stimulated when you bite and chew due to the force that travels through the root of your tooth and into the bone. When a person is missing teeth (especial entire rows of teeth on the top or bottom of their jaws) this effect is more severe and can lead to the face sinking in and causing the person to look significantly older. When the tooth is no longer there, it can disturb the interplay between teeth and bone. When this happens, gum and bone are no longer stimulated sufficiently because of the missing teeth and subsequently the jaw bone starts to shrink and your gums pull back. This can weaken the surrounding teeth which can lead to collapse. Teeth in the opposite jaw can then start growing into the gap, causing an un-natural tooth line.

People who have lost teeth also live with negative side effects in their health and quality of life. Missing teeth can make it more difficult to chew and consume healthy foods such as vegetables, nuts, and meats. There are also social consequences of missing teeth. Patients can suffer from deficiencies in self-confidence and can become more conscious about their appearance or their ability to eat. These side effects can take the joy away from social activities they once enjoyed so much.

Best Options for Replacing Teeth

  • Dental implants are by far the best option for replacing missing teeth because it replaces both the tooth root and the crown. This is highly beneficial because the replacement tooth is embedded into the bone and helps with further bone loss. This restore the appearance and functionality of your smile and will provide a permanent solution to the missing teeth. Additionally, unlike other tooth restoration option, dental implants never need to be replaced or adjusted, so you only have to pay for them once.
  • Another option for tooth replacement is a bridge. A bridge is an attachment that connects to neighboring healthy teeth to fill the gap caused by the missing tooth. This too can prevent bone loss and prevents the surrounding teeth from switching into the gap created by the missing teeth.
  • Partials and dentures are another option for missing teeth, but do not fix the problems of bone atrophy and consequently a sinking face. Dentures will restore the appearance of your smile and some of its functions, but it will not stop the bones in your jaw from diminishing and the shape of your face changing.
  • If you are missing teeth, please do not hesitate to get in contact with Holladay Family Dental about restoring your smile. Delaying the replacement of missing teeth can have costly side effects that can be prevented by being proactive in the restoration of your smile.

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