Your teeth are much more than chewing tools; they are an important part of your body and daily life. They are crucial for proper speaking, preventing bone decay and even maintaining facial tissue and muscles. When you lose a tooth, it can wreak havoc on your oral health, resulting in difficulty with speech and even changing your facial appearance. Read on to learn more about the complications associated with a missing tooth and what options may be available for replacing a missing tooth.
Complications of Missing Teeth
Every single tooth in the human mouth is crucial to adequate oral health. Even when just one tooth is missing, it can cause serious oral health issues, including the following:
- Shifting of existing tooth
- Loss of proper alignment
- Increased risk of tooth decay and gum disease
- Exposure of tooth roots
- Strain in the jaw, which leads to issues with your bite
- Bone deterioration, which leads to the alteration of the shape of your face
- Impairment of your speech, which can lead to lack of self-confidence
As you can see, there are multiple issues that can arise when you lose a tooth and fail to have it replaced.
Options for Replacing for Missing Teeth
Luckily, there are numerous options available to you for replacing your lost tooth or lost teeth so that your smile can be repaired before any of the aforementioned complications have time to occur. As a general rule, the three primary tooth replacement options are fixed bridges, dentures or dental implants.
- Fixed Bridges – A bridge will require that you have healthy and functioning adjacent teeth to where the missing tooth is. The two teeth on either side of the missing tooth will receive a crown, and an artificial tooth is designed to go in between these two. The false tooth is typically made of alloy, porcelain, gold or a combination of these.
- Dentures – There are both full and partial dentures, which means that even if you are just missing a couple of teeth, a denture can be made to accommodate you. However, because of the issues that many people have with dentures, most people opt for a more permanent solution when replacing a tooth. However, dentures tend to be cheaper than dental implants.
- Dental Implants – A dental implant is placed right into the jaw bone where the original tooth's root was once located. It is a permanent solution that does not require much maintenance. Dental implants do tend to be a bit pricier than other tooth replacement options. Due to the fact that dental implants can last forever with adequate care and are up to 98 percent successful, dental implants appear to be the most cost-effective solution.
If you're missing a tooth or teeth, it is important that you schedule a consultation with your dentist to discuss what options are available and what the best method is for your individual case. Don't wait a major complication or issue to occur to schedule that appointment, as this will only turn what could have been a simple repair process into a complex and expensive procedure. For more information, contact a clinic such as The Center For Progressive Dentistry.