Since it happens often as we grow older, many people believe that tooth loss is just another part of aging. However, adult teeth are referred to as permanent because they were meant to last a lifetime. A full set of teeth is essential to proper biting, chewing, and speaking, as well as your confidence in your smile. When you lose even a single tooth, your future oral health may depend on successfully replacing it.
Tooth Loss is Typically Preventable
Unlike baby teeth, adult teeth don’t (or shouldn’t) spontaneously come loose and fall out. Other than accidental trauma knocking a tooth out of its socket, tooth loss generally results from a progressive dental disease. For instance, gum disease, which is the leading cause of permanent tooth loss, slowly destroys the gums and jawbone that support healthy teeth.
By the time many patients seek treatment, gum disease has already rendered the mouth unable to support one or more teeth, making tooth loss or tooth extraction imminent. Brushing and flossing your teeth every day and diligently attending a dental exam and cleaning every six months can help prevent the onset of gum disease and the risks of resulting tooth loss.
When it isn’t, Tooth Replacement is Necessary
If you lose one or more teeth, then filling the gaps with a dental bridge, partial, or full denture can help you once again bite, chew, speak, and smile confidently. Dental implants, which are surgically inserted into the jawbone to replace lost teeth roots, offer unmatched support for replacement teeth, increasing stability and significantly improving their function.
By replacing lost teeth roots, implants also help keep your jawbone strong by stimulating a healthy flow of nutrient-rich blood when you bite and chew. This also benefits your long-term dental health by reducing your risks of future tooth loss, which can occur due to jawbone deterioration following previous tooth loss.