Suffering from a missing tooth? As uncommon as it may sound, a lot of people actually experience tooth loss at one point or another, whether it be a result of decay, accident or injury. Thankfully, there are a good amount of replacement options that dentists can present to patients. For the longest time, dentures were…
Truths and Myths about Replacing a Missing Tooth
Those who have a missing tooth have likely heard a lot about the effects of missing teeth and replacement options. Replacing a missing tooth is more than just improving the smile’s appearance. To fully get the importance of tooth replacement, it is crucial to understand the effects of leaving the tooth unreplaced. This article covers some of the truths and myths surrounding teeth replacement.
Truths of teeth replacement
The following are truths regarding the replacement of a missing tooth:
A missing tooth causes jawbone loss: The jawbone gets its strength from the stimulation generated when biting and chewing. Once the tooth is lost, the bone in the area weakens because it cannot get adequate stimulation. Bone weakening is also called resorption. This condition can affect the structural integrity of other teeth.
Other teeth will shift: When there is a gap between the teeth, other teeth will begin to move, causing bite misalignment. The shift may cause the teeth to loosen, a phenomenon called bite collapse and tooth splaying. The crooked teeth can make the teeth difficult to clean, leading to other dental issues.
Headaches: A missing tooth can result in headaches and temporomandibular joint disorder. The problem is that with one tooth gone, the rest of the teeth have to work more chew and bite foods.
Myths of replacing a lost tooth
Replacing missing teeth is painful: This is one of the common myths that has discouraged many from seeking teeth replacement options. This is however untrue. The dentist will perform the dental restoration procedure under local anesthetic, which means patients will not experience any pain during and after the procedure. Also, when the process is handled by a professional dentist, the risks are minimal and patients will get to discuss options to minimize pain during and after the treatment.
Teeth replacement is too expensive: It is reasonable to consider the cost of replacing a lost tooth. Most people would prefer to stay with a hole in their smiles than spend a lot of money on dental restoration. However, the process is not as expensive as people think. The dentist can provide patients with cost-effective and practical options to replace the tooth. Despite this, the cost of doing nothing is more so it is better to go through with the process.
Tooth replacements stand out between the teeth: Years ago, the materials used for replacing a missing tooth were not as natural-looking as those available now. Advancements in dentistry have provided dentists with materials that are customizable and blend in seamlessly with the rest of the smile.
The bottom line
Replacing a missing tooth is necessary because the consequences of leaving a hole in the smile are too serious to overlook, whether it be jawbone resorption and headaches to misaligned teeth and speech issues. Multiple dental studies have shown that losing only one tooth can cause the collapse of the bite and the loss of other teeth. It is advisable to visit a general dentist as soon as possible to discuss tooth replacement options.
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