Tooth Replacement Options: The Best Treatment Methods Available
A missing tooth doesn’t mean the end of your smile.
Missing teeth are not just a source of embarrassment and discomfort—they can also lead to significant issues with both your oral and your overall health. The longer you go with a gap in your teeth, the more likely you are to experience tooth shifting, bone loss, gum disease, and more.
If you’re looking for a way to replace a tooth you’ve lost to protect your oral health and regain your smile, there are a number of different options available to you. Read on to learn more about the best tooth replacement options, along with some other useful information about the hows and whys of missing teeth.
The Most Common Reasons for Missing Teeth
There are a few different reasons why you might wind up with a missing tooth:
- Gum disease.
- Tooth decay.
- Traumatic dental injury.
- Poor nutrition.
- Poor oral hygiene.
There are also certain diseases that are associated with significant tooth loss, such as heart disease, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and more.
Why you should replace missing teeth.
People tend to avoid replacing missing teeth for a variety of reasons. Sometimes it’s due to dental anxiety, sometimes they lack the finances, and other times it’s simply because they don’t feel their lives are being significantly impacted by it. However, the truth is that it’s critical to replace any missing teeth, and the aesthetics of your smile have very little to do with it.
1. Your remaining teeth can shift.
When a gap in your teeth opens up, it can lead to the surrounding teeth shifting to fill in the empty space. This can cause a change in your bite, an increased risk for gum disease and tooth decay, and even the loosening of your other teeth.
2. It can change your facial structure.
Your tooth roots stimulate growth in your jawbone. When a tooth is missing, it can result in bone loss, which can then result in a shifting of your facial structure. This can not only change your appearance, but it can also cause you to look significantly older than you are.
3. It increases your risk of gum disease.
When you’re missing teeth, it makes you more susceptible to an infection of the gums. That infection can, in turn, cause a number of issues with your oral health, including loose teeth and even more tooth loss. Gum disease is also associated with a variety of serious health conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.
4. It can be detrimental to your mental health.
For most people, life is more challenging when you don’t feel good about the appearance of your smile. Worrying about what others think whenever they see your teeth is never easy. Even if you’re not concerned about those things, the difficulty with chewing and speaking that missing teeth can cause can still be very difficult to cope with on a daily basis.
The Best Tooth Replacement Options
If you’re ready to replace a missing tooth, then you’ll be happy to know that there are a number of different ways to do it.
1. Dental Bridges
A dental bridge is a simple but effective device composed of two dental crowns on either side of a prosthetic tooth or row of teeth. These crowns are attached to the healthy teeth on either side of the gap where the tooth loss has occurred so that the prosthetics can fill in the space. This tooth replacement method is one of the least invasive and most affordable.
2. Partial or Full Dentures
Dentures are a great option for replacing multiple missing teeth at once. Partial dentures can replace three or more teeth, while full dentures can replace an entire row. While this option provides a much more affordable solution than most others, dentures don’t quite have the bite power or the natural feel that other solutions offer.
3. Dental Implants
This tooth replacement option has become incredibly popular thanks to the natural look and feel of implants, not to mention their superior strength and durability. Dental implants are fused to the jawbone through a process called osseointegration, which not only provides extra support but also stimulates bone growth.
4. Implant-Supported Dentures
The previously mentioned drawbacks of dentures can be mitigated with the help of a tooth implant. Implant-supported dentures use dental implants to permanently install dentures in the mouth and provide stability and strength that standard dentures do not have. These tooth implants are strategically placed so that you only need a few of them to support an entire row of teeth.
Replace Your Missing Teeth with Berrien Dental
If you’re in need of tooth replacement, Berrien Dental is the best dentist Berrien Springs and St. Joseph, MI, have to offer. Call today or go online to schedule your appointment and regain the health of your smile.