If you’ve lost one or more teeth, than the gaps left in your smile would probably motivate you to replace them. Yet, how you choose to replace them can determine the state of your oral health in the future, so understanding the complexities of tooth loss and your options for addressing them can better prepare you to make an informed decision. For instance, aside from a gapped smile, do you know how tooth loss can eventually affect your facial appearance? Facial collapse, or the sunken-jaw appearance that afflicts many people who’ve lost a significant amount of teeth over the years, can take a while to become noticeable, but the mechanisms behind it begin the moment a tooth is loss, and grow worse with every subsequent lost tooth. Grimes dentist, Dr. Ryan Hussong, explores these mechanisms, and explains how you can help prevent facial collapse after tooth loss.
What You Might Not Know About Tooth Loss
We should state that prevention is always the best medicine, and with adequate dental hygiene and professional care, you can largely prevent tooth loss due to extensive disease. Our innovative restorative procedures can even help save teeth damaged by severe trauma. Nevertheless, the sad truth is that, sometimes, it’s just time for your tooth to go. When it does, your tooth typically takes its root with it, which can devastate the health of your jawbone.
Healthy tooth roots act as a beacon when you bite and chew; the stimulation tells your body that your jawbone needs nutrients to support them. Losing one or more of these roots means fewer nutrients go to your jawbone, which deteriorates from the deficiency over time, leading to further tooth loss and facial collapse.
What is a Dental Implant?
Depending on the number and position of the teeth you’ve lost, you have a plethora of options for replenishing your ability to chew and speak. Only when coupled with one or more dental implants, however, can a dental prosthetic replace your lost tooth’s entire root-and-crown structure. Surgically inserted into your jawbone, a dental implant is shaped to mimic your tooth’s root, and is fitted with an abutment post to attach the crown portion of your replacement teeth (i.e., dental crown, partial, or full denture). Aside from offering a more secure anchor for your new smile, implants also restore root stimulation and help prevent the jawbone deterioration that causes facial collapse.
Preserve Your Smile with Help from Your Grimes Dentist
To learn more about the devastating effects of tooth loss and how to prevent them with dental implants, schedule an appointment with your Grimes dentist by calling Cornerstone Dental at (515) 984-6001. Located in the 50226 area, we proudly welcome families from Des Moines, Polk City, Ames, Ankeny, Alleman, Bondurant, Grimes, Johnston, and the surrounding communities.