Back when you were younger and waiting for your permanent teeth to come in, losing a tooth could be an exciting experience! Now that you’re older, however, a missing tooth isn’t such great news. With no new tooth coming in after it, you might be wondering if you really need to replace it. Even if you don’t think anyone will see that gap in your smile, the rest of your mouth will notice! As soon as you lose a tooth, health issues like gum disease, digestive complications, and bone loss aren’t far behind. Find out exactly what happens when you don’t replace a missing tooth, and what you can do about it!
Consequences of a Missing Tooth
Even a single missing tooth can make it difficult to eat or speak correctly, but that’s not the only thing that changes! You could also experience:
- This condition occurs when neighboring teeth shift towards each other in an attempt to close the gap, causing them to become crooked and misaligned.
- Super-eruption of teeth. With nothing to stop them, the teeth on either side of the gap can overgrow into the empty space and become misshapen.
- Resorption of your jawbone. Teeth keep your jawbone healthy by stimulating blood flow. As soon as one goes missing, the bone tissue it used to support begins to deteriorate.
Long-Term Effects of Tooth Loss
If tooth loss is left untreated for months or years, you might develop larger issues like:
- A buildup of plaque and bacteria, increasing your risk of cavities and gum disease.
- The need for expensive corrective surgery or orthodontic treatment.
- Digestive problems like acid reflux or malnutrition from incorrect chewing habits.
- A “sunken” appearance in your facial features, caused by the bone loss in your jaw.
How Can I Replace My Missing Teeth?
A common tooth replacement option is dentures in Corbin, where removable prosthetic teeth are fitted between your remaining teeth. As they restore function, they also keep the surrounding teeth from shifting and overgrowing.
For a more permanent, lifelike solution, dental implants in Corbin are a great choice. They integrate directly into your jawbone, creating realistic stability, supporting the surrounding teeth, and preventing bone resorption. You can rebuild your smile and restore your health with dental implants that are designed to look, act, and feel just like natural teeth!
There’s no reason to suffer the consequences of missing teeth. Visit you dentist today to discover the treatment plan that’s right for you and regain your healthy, functional smile!
About the Author
Dr. Katherine Whitaker is a preventive, restorative, and dental implant dentist in Corbin, KY. She is a graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry and holds memberships in The American Dental Association, the Kentucky Dental Association, and the Southeastern Dental Association. It is her passion to rebuild beautiful, healthy smiles that inspire confidence using tooth replacement options like dental implants. If you’d like to know more, she can be reached via her website or at (606) 523-1415.