Missing teeth are more than an esthetic issue. In fact, missing teeth can cause serious problems for your overall health.
According to Dr. Jack Ringer, past president and an Accredited Fellow with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, adult teeth are meant to last for the rest of your life. In fact, the enamel on your teeth is harder and stronger than your bones. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take care of them.
According to your dentist in Orange County, poor oral hygiene is the biggest cause of tooth decay and gum disease. If gum disease advances to the more serious periodontis, you will eventually lose your teeth. Tooth trauma and accidents also cause missing teeth.
If you follow the Dental Cosmetics Blog, you will know that your mouth is the gateway to the rest of your body. If your mouth is unhealthy, chances are, so is the rest of you.
According to Colgate, each missing tooth increases oral health risks. Missing teeth will also shrink your jawbone causing gum recession weakening the remaining adjacent or abutment teeth.
Missing teeth can also cause tooth decay and plaque buildup because it is difficult to brush the remaining teeth. Other problems that can occur with missing teeth include crooked and crowded remaining teeth and teeth that will grow into where the tooth used to be.
A missing tooth also increases the risk of gingivitis and more serious periodontal disease. Receding gums allow bacteria to thrive in the diseased gum tissue pockets.
While there are several procedures that fix missing teeth, some are better than others are. As your OC dentist explains, it is always better to keep your natural teeth, but if they are already lost or can’t be saved, the following solutions may be recommended.
Arguably the best solution for missing teeth, dental implants are artificial titanium steel posts or screws that are surgically placed in or on your jawbone. Because the posts act as natural bone, they will fuse with the jawbone giving you teeth that are just as strong, if not stronger than your natural teeth.
Dr. Ringer may recommend a bridge if dental implants aren’t a good fit. Dental implants may require additional surgery such as a sinus or gum lift, especially if the missing tooth is on the top. Some patients prefer to go the non-surgical route with a bridge. Dental bridges are used to create a bridge between the two remaining teeth.
Partial or full dentures are removable dental appliances that Dr. Ringer uses when bridges or dental implants are not an option. Made for acrylic and metal, they will not act as natural tooth roots and will cause your jawbone to shrink. Dentures need to be replaced every 10 years or when the patient has facial changes or body weight changes.
Your Orange County dentist can’t stress the importance of oral hygiene. The best way to keep your natural teeth is to brush twice and floss once a day. Enjoy a healthy diet that is rich in protein, calcium and fruits and vegetables and don’t forget to include regular checkups with Dental Cosmetics in Anaheim.
Your dentist in OC also recommends a custom made mouth protector if you participate in any type of sport where your head could suffer a blow, a custom made mouthguard keep you on the playing field and out of the ER.
If you would like more information regarding missing teeth, call and schedule an appointment with Dr. Ringer and his Dental Cosmetics team today.