If you have had to get a tooth pulled (or more than one tooth pulled), you may be thinking that the gap might not look that bad. Maybe it isn't even visible if it's in the back of your mouth. But this is not something you should just learn to live with. Missing teeth can create additional issues that implants can solve handily. If you try to ignore the gap, you may end up with more pain, more dental procedures, and more cosmetic issues than you want.
You know those nice, plump cheeks of yours? Your teeth are partly responsible for that plumpness. They form a nice wall behind your cheeks, preventing the skin from falling inward and giving you the appearance of being older. One missing tooth might not have such a visible effect, but if you're missing a bunch of teeth, then you could see your cheeks start to fall in a bit.
More Gum Irritation
It seems counter-intuitive to think that surgery for an implant might be less irritating to your gums than leaving a gap alone, but over time, extra food can scrape against the gum surfaces in the gaps as you chew. The contact with the food and potential scraping as your tongue tries to dislodge the food can lead to long-term gum irritation. The surgery for an implant will heal, meaning that long-term irritation will likely not be an issue for you if you get implants instead of leaving the gap alone.
What Do You Mean My Teeth Are Growing?
Maybe you've had those adult teeth for decades, but they can still start growing again (called supra-eruption) if there's nothing to block their paths. In other words, pull out a molar on your bottom jaw, for example, and the corresponding molar on the top jaw could start to lengthen. If that starts to happen to you, you're gong to have to figure out what to do with those teeth that are now growing, and that could involve pulling them, which means more bills and procedures for you. Even if you belatedly get an implant in the space created when you pulled the tooth, you'll have to modify the growing tooth somehow so that the implant isn't damaged.
Talk to your dentist to learn more about this topic. The sooner you do this, the better for you, your teeth, your emotional well-being, and your wallet.