If you have missing teeth, it’s likely you have a first-hand understanding of the importance of replacing missing teeth. Though people may not fully understand the dangers of missing teeth unless they, themselves, have missing teeth, the side effects of having no teeth and the reality of living with missing teeth is very real.
Here are the Top 3 Dangers Associated with Missing Teeth:
Missing teeth lead to bone loss.
Each tooth works in accordance with the jaw bone to provide support for the rest of the teeth and the surrounding bone. The jaw bone will remain strong as long as it’s strengthened and stimulated by chewing or biting. When a tooth is missing, the remaining bone (where the tooth once occupied) is no longer exercised through biting and chewing. The underlying bone weakens and leads to further bone loss, which affects everything from the appearance of the face, to the ability to chew and even the ability to speak. In fact, tooth loss is actually the leading cause of bone loss!
Missing teeth lead to difficulty chewing, eating and speaking.
It’s no secret that each tooth plays a vital role in the ability to chew, eat and speak. When teeth are missing, these basic functions are significantly hindered. If any of the front teeth are missing, it’s difficult to bite into a variety of foods, like apples, pears or corn-on-the-cob. If the back teeth are missing, it’s tough to chew foods that require these strong, durable molars to grind food. Eating foods that require heavy-duty chewing, like meat or nuts, is significantly more challenging (and in some cases, nearly impossible) without missing back teeth.
Missing teeth lead to poor bite conditions and unbalanced facial structures.
Among the dangers of missing teeth are poor bites, or malocclusions, and unbalanced facial structures contributing to an unbalanced appearance. The position of your bite is incredibly important for a number of reasons. Your bite affects your ability to chew, speak, eat and breathe. When teeth are missing, the remaining teeth have a tendency to shift and fill in the gaps. Teeth surrounding the missing tooth gap will drift toward other teeth, creating a misaligned bite. Teeth that fall out of line may constrict the airways, elicit pain when pressure is applied to them, or obstruct the tongue’s movements.
Similarly, as the teeth shift and the bite repositions itself, the entire facial structure is altered. As bone loss occurs in place of missing teeth, the jaw starts to sink, contributing to an unhealthy appearance.
The extent of problems associated with missing teeth may surprise you. Missing teeth directly affect one’s quality of life. Not only is a person’s functionality challenged when teeth are missing, but a person’s appearance and associated self esteem are on the line as well.
To help you preserve your quality of life, we provide bone regeneration in New Port Richey and Tampa, FL. If you want to prevent missing teeth caused by gum disease, ask us about our scaling and root planing treatment to clean the crown and root surfaces of your teeth.
Schedule an appointment with our highly-skilled periodontists today, or reach out to us to get your questions answered. We love hearing from you!