How Not Replacing a Missing Tooth can Impact Your Life
The impact of missing teeth in one’s life is pretty clear and I think most of us could agree that our day-to-day life would be dramatically improved by replacing them. However, there are other real issues and dangers that can impact our life if we don’t replace missing teeth.
According to the American College of Prosthodontics, there are more than 35 million Americans that do not have any teeth, and 178 million missing at least one tooth. Tooth loss (the clinical term is Edentulism) can occur for a variety of reasons, to include injury, wear, cancer, and gum disease. In addition to the negative impact on our appearance and self-esteem, tooth loss has real long-term costs and health risks.
Inability to Eat Certain Foods
Missing teeth can reduce your ability to eat certain types of foods as a result of not being able to bite into or chew certain foods. Overcompensating for not chewing your missing tooth, or teeth, can result in overuse, which could lead to poor nutrition and diminished health.
Known as bone resorption, bone loss occurs after a tooth is gone because the natural roots of the tooth are no longer embedded into the jawbone, leaving a void. Unfortunately, bone resorption doesn’t only impact the one tooth that’s missing, it actually puts you at risk of losing neighboring teeth and will eventually impact your facial appearance. A missing tooth (or teeth) can also increase the chance you will develop gum disease in the area where the tooth once existed or even suffer from tooth decay in neighboring teeth.
Negative Impact on Speech
If certain teeth are missing, such as the ones in the front, it can also impact the way you speak and your ability to clearly pronounce certain words. You may develop a lisp or a change in how you pronounce certain words and sounds.
If a space from the missing tooth can be seen when you smile, eat, or speak, you may start to avoid smiling, eating, and speaking to people in public. This can have a significant impact on your social life, your job, and as a result, the amount of money you are able to earn at your job. If gum disease develops due to the missing tooth, you may begin to experience bad breath, as well.
Options for Replacing a Missing Tooth
Ok, so the information above may have left you feeling hopeless or disheartened. BUT, there is no need to feel discouraged because there are several options to consider. The include dentures, dental bridges, and the most effective and long-lasting—dental implants.
Dental implants are sturdy, durable, and compared to the other options, much longer lasting. In addition to offering all those benefits, dental implants can also help to preserve your jawbone because the titanium post used for the implant will actually fuse
with the jawbone over time. This helps to continue stimulating growth and minimizes the potential for bone loss.
Implants can also restore your confidence since they look and feel like real teeth. However, during your consultation we will present all options, and I am completely confident we can find the right replacement option to fit your lifestyle and budget. To schedule a consultation appointment you can call us at (315) 394-1930, or visit us online at www.fingerlakesdental.com