Missing teeth can be downright embarrassing. People feel self conscious when there is a big gap between their teeth. Even if other people are not put off by a missing tooth in your smile, may still feel embarrassed. As much as restoring your beautiful smile has cosmetic benefits, Lifetime Family Dental wants you to know that replacing missing teeth also has some significant health benefits. Here are four reasons to replace a missing tooth:
1. Remaining teeth can shift
It is normal for an adult to have 32 teeth, including wisdom teeth. Many people have had their wisdom teeth removed due to a lack of space in the mouth. So the average normal tooth count is 28. These teeth are lined up snugly against each other and meet their upper or lower counterpart in what’s known as a bite. Being close together, side-by-side, they support each other, providing strength and chewing efficiency. When a tooth is missing, the adjacent teeth lose this support and can shift. This can cause a misaligned bite, the potential gum disease or even tooth decay. It is important to replace a missing tooth to prevent other teeth from moving out of place.
2. TMJ dysfunction
The temporomandibular joint is the most complex joint in your body. It moves up and down, side to side, and front to back. It depends on the proper alignment of your upper and lower jaw in order to function properly. When one or several teeth are missing, the remaining teeth may shift, putting stress on the TMJ. This can result in significant pain or even jaw locking. By replacing missing teeth as soon as possible, TMJ dysfunction can be avoided.
3. Bone loss
When you lose a tooth, the bone that holds it in place begins to shrink. There are several problems that could result. Your gum will begin to retract and your gum line will lower, potentially causing periodontal disease. In addition, the bone loss can cause the adjacent teeth to loosen and even possibly fall out. If you replace the missing tooth with an implant, the bone will grow and the surrounding teeth will have strengthened support.
Bone loss can also change your appearance, making you look older than you should. If you lose any of the teeth in the front of your mouth, your chin may shorten and create a sunken look. When you lose teeth on the sides of your mouth, the cheek muscles will droop as bone loss occurs.
It seems that children are always proud to show off their missing teeth. Adults usually have a different reaction. Having a hole where a tooth should be can affect speech patterns and pronunciation. When you have difficulty chewing, it can lead to other health problems, especially digestion. All of these factors can be extremely detrimental to your self-confidence.
Replacing Missing Teeth in Gilbert
Our team at Lifetime Family Dental in Gilbert can show you many options for replacing missing teeth. We can restore your beautiful smile, improve your chewing ability and help you regain your self-confidence. Call today for an appointment! We have flexible office hours and we can work with you to give several helpful payment options. Don’t go a day longer with missing teeth. We are here for you!