Are you missing a tooth or maybe multiple teeth? You’re not alone! Your dentist in Fairfax and the American College of Prosthodontists say that more than 36 million Americans do not have any teeth, and about 120 million people are missing at least one tooth.
How does it happen? Why and when do we lose teeth? And, most importantly, is it really that big of a deal if you don’t replace them when they’re gone?
We’ll answer these questions (and hopefully more) — for you!
Every person is different, and there are so many reasons you might have a missing tooth or multiple missing teeth. However, the number one reason why this happens to many adults is simply due to age. Over time, our teeth start to weaken and become more fragile. They often break, become decayed, and fall out if left untreated. Periodontal or gum disease can make the situation worse too, but teeth are also lost due to:
So, there are also other reasons not related to our age that could result in tooth loss.
Believe it or not, all of your teeth count on each other to function correctly. They keep each other in the proper position, so there could be trouble when you lose a tooth. Besides directly affecting your adjacent teeth, the rest of your teeth can move out of position. Your Fairfax dentist will tell you this leads to an unbalanced bite and extra pressure on your remaining teeth. As your bite breaks down over time, the same can happen to your jawbone and facial muscles. When this happens, your face can have a “sunken” appearance that prematurely ages you. Missing teeth also means you might not be able to eat crunchy foods like vegetables or chewy proteins that your body needs to stay healthy. Your teeth are designed to help you better digest your food, and when they’re gone, your diet changes too.
You should never ignore a missing tooth or teeth. By not addressing them, there could be more extensive problems down the road that are more likely to cause more costly issues. Please call our dental office in Fairfax today to arrange an implant consultation. We can take the time to listen to your needs and create a plan of action to give you back your healthy smile and confidence.