Tooth loss does more than impact the appeal of your smile, especially if you lose your front tooth. It affects your ability to eat and chew properly, as well as how you communicate. It may also lead to confidence issues and low self-esteem. Missing teeth can lead to a myriad of problems if left untreated.
This post shares more about the consequences of not replacing a missing tooth, as well as the primary causes of missing teeth, so you can take care of your teeth and enjoy a beautiful, confident smile.
What Happens If You Don’t Replace a Missing Tooth?
Most people are usually concerned with the aesthetic impact of a missing tooth. However, your teeth may also shift out of alignment if you don’t replace them as they try to fill the resulting gap. Shifting teeth can create a bad bite and result in oral health issues. When the remaining teeth move, it disturbs the roots, which can weaken their structure and integrity.
You may also suffer from bone loss if you don’t replace a missing tooth. The presence of tooth roots stimulates the gums and jawbones and promotes bone and tissue health. When you don’t replace a missing tooth, the jawbone loses density due to lack of stimulation.
Lastly, you may experience pain and difficulty when chewing if you have a missing tooth. It can take more time to chew your food, and you may feel pain from the pressure. The pressure and muscle strain from chewing with a misaligned bite can lead to headaches, soreness of the jaw, and even temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.
What are the Common Causes of Missing Teeth?
Missing teeth can occur due to various reasons. Below are some of the most common causes of tooth loss.
- Gum Disease: Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is the most common cause of tooth loss in adults. The disease spreads from the gums to the bone beneath the tooth, causing your teeth to become loose and fall out.
- Tooth Decay: Untreated cavities can severely affect the tooth to the point that saving your natural tooth becomes impossible, leading to tooth loss.
- Accidents and Injuries: You may lose a tooth due to accidents like falls and trauma to the tooth during activities such as aggressive contact sports.
- Genetics: Your genes may predispose you to missing teeth when your incisors or wisdom teeth fail to develop. The condition is known as hypodontia if six or fewer permanent teeth do not emerge, and oligodontia if it affects more than six teeth.
Don’t Wait to Replace Missing Teeth
Your teeth work as a unit, and if one is gone, the others can suffer. No matter how you lose your tooth, you should seek professional help for treatment and tooth replacement. You can restore your smile with a variety of replacement solutions, including dental bridges, dentures, and implants. Always seek the services of an experienced and licensed dentist for optimal results and a full, beautiful smile.