The Consequences of Missing Teeth
GAPS ARE A BIGGER DEAL THAN YOU THINK
The goal of most dentists is to help every patient keep all of their own teeth as long as possible. As dental health awareness, patient education, and technology have advanced over time, dentists now see fewer missing teeth than ever before. Still, lost teeth can happen and many patients think it is no big deal if they lose a tooth and they choose not to replace it. However, missing teeth are more than just a gap in your smile; they can cause serious problems. The longer a tooth is missing, the bigger your problem can get. DentalWorks in Austin, TX is skilled at replacing missing teeth with several advanced dentistry options. Read more about dental restorations before scheduling your consultation at DentalWorks in Austin, TX.
ABOUT MISSING TEETH
If you have heard of muscle atrophy, you understand that without stimulation and exercise, our muscles can waste away. The same scenario occurs with your gums and jawbone. Holding each tooth root in place keeps your gums and jaw stimulated. When you lose even one single tooth, the bone and gum tissue holding that tooth begins to weaken from lack of use. Patients who are missing all of their teeth on their top, lower, or both arches are so impacted by atrophy that their jaw begins to appear small and sunken. Patients who have lost teeth, whether it be a single tooth, several, or more, can also experience negative effects in their overall health as well as their quality of life. It may be difficult to chew properly or speak clearly. People with several missing teeth can suffer from self-esteem issues. This can also start to affect their social life as they start to avoid outings they used to love. Dental professionals across the country highly recommend replacing missing teeth to avoid the many complications that can occur.
Maybe your decision to not replace your missing tooth is a cost issue or perhaps you simply didn’t realize that there were long-term consequences. However, if you are missing a tooth or teeth, it’s important that you look into your options for tooth replacement. The longer you wait to replace a tooth, the bigger your risk for further bone and gum loss plus other issues. Common tooth replacement options include dental implants, bridges, partials, and dentures.
Many dentists think dental implants are the best option for replacing missing teeth. Modern advancements in dental restorations have made implant dentistry a leader in the treatment for missing teeth. The primary reason is because they can replace both the tooth root as well as the visible tooth crown. Dental implants prevent future bone loss as the metal post is embedded into the gums, stimulating the bone and keeping it functioning normally. The crown, bridge, or denture will be attached to the metal implant(s). There are many pros to having a dental implant. They function and look like real teeth, plus they can last a long time. The primary downside to dental implants is a longer recovery period and cost. Even with the recovery and high cost, dental implants are the preferred way to replace missing teeth.
A bridge is a group of false teeth that are held in place in the mouth by attaching to existing healthy teeth. A dental bridge is comprised of a false tooth with a dental crown on either side. These crowns are cemented to healthy teeth to fill in the gap left behind by your missing tooth. Bridges keep the rest of your teeth from moving out of alignment, but they do not prevent gum and jawbone atrophy. Bridges can last for quite some time. They also tend to cost less than dental implants.
PARTIALS AND DENTURES
Dentures are a dental appliance or restoration that are often used if you need to replace all or most of the teeth on the upper, lower, or both arches. This type of restoration is made up a plate that supports a group of false teeth that fit over your natural gums. Made custom, modern dentures are made to look natural. Partials dentures can be used for patients who are missing many, but not all their teeth. Although partial and full dentures restore the appearance and function of your smile, they cannot prevent gum and bone atrophy. Those with removable dentures will still experience some degree of atrophy and a change in the shape of their lower face. This is another reason that dental implants are the preferred option for the replacement of missing teeth.
FIX IT NOW TO AVOID FUTURE PROBLEMS
If you suffer from missing teeth, you should understand the risk of not replacing them. When you are ready to learn more about your restoration options, we invite you to contact DentalWorks in Austin, TX. Our state-of-the-art facility offers numerous options for tooth replacement and we can help you choose one that fits your lifestyle and budget. We take many forms of payment and, if needed, our compassionate staff can help you find low-interest medical financing. Get your missing teeth replaced so you don't have to deal with the consequences of leaving them alone. We look forward to speaking more about the subject of missing teeth during your private consultation.
* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.