Leaving a missing tooth unrestored can lead to several complications. If not replaced, tooth loss can negatively affect your chewing, smile, and facial structure.
Tooth loss also referred to as edentulism, can significantly impair the well-being and quality of life (QOL) in patients. But what exactly causes it? And are there any restorative treatment options for replacing missing teeth? Read on as we discuss the causes of tooth loss and the main reasons you should replace missing teeth.
What Causes Tooth Loss?
While there are many causes of missing teeth, below are three common contributors to tooth loss:
- Tooth Decay: Also referred to as cavities, tooth decay is the leading cause of tooth loss. Visible holes or pits characterize tooth decay in your teeth due to acidity and high bacterial infection. When left untreated, tooth decay damages the dental pulp, which, in turn, leads to edentulism.
- Gum Disease: Gum or periodontal disease is the infection of the tissues that hold your teeth in place. Gum diseases are a result of high bacterial build-up and poor brushing or flossing habits. A serious gum infection can damage the bone supporting the tooth, causing bleeding gums and even tooth loss.
- Dental Trauma: Dental trauma is another cause of missing teeth. For example, the impact experienced when you hit your mouth on a hard surface during physical activities such as sports can disrupt the normal growth of the enamel, decrease blood flow to the tooth, damage your tooth’s nerves and subsequently cause tooth loss.
Why Should You Replace a Missing Tooth?
Leaving a missing tooth unrestored can lead to several complications. If not replaced, tooth loss can negatively affect your chewing, smile, and facial structure. Here are some reasons why you should replace a missing tooth:
- Replacing a missing tooth can strengthen your jawbone – After losing your tooth, the jawbone becomes weak through a process called “resorption.” If not fixed in time, missing teeth can cause your jawbone to degenerate. This, in turn, causes the lower part of your face to shrink, making you appear older than you are. A timely replacement of your missing teeth is important as it’ll strengthen the jawbone and enable it to hold your teeth strongly.
- Replacing a missing tooth improves your smile, facial appearance – Smiling with gaps in your teeth can make you self-conscious and hinder you from enjoying a hearty conversation. Replacing a missing tooth can help you regain your smile and enhance your confidence, facial appearance.
- Replacing lost teeth curbs chewing difficulties and impaired speech – Missing a tooth can affect your speech and lead to difficulties when pronouncing particular words. It can also make it hard to chew food. And can gradually make you lose desire or appetite for certain dishes. Replacing lost teeth will play a huge part in managing chewing difficulties and impaired speech.
What Restorative Options Are There for a Missing Tooth?
Dentures, dental implants, and bridges are some of the common restorative options for missing teeth. When adapted early, these restorative options help strengthen the jawbone and improve your visual appearance and speech.
Contact the Dental Anesthesia Center for Tooth Replacement
Are you planning to replace your missing teeth? Contact The Dental Anesthesia Center for assistance. Not sure which replacement option to choose? Worry not! Our dentists will help you choose the right teeth replacement option for you. Call us today and request an appointment.
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The Only Board Certified Dental Anesthesiologists in the State of Missouri, including the St. Louis Metro Area.