The loss of a tooth or more than one tooth is more than a cosmetic issue for our patients. The dentists at Westermeier-Martin Dental Care in East Aurora understand that losing a tooth is cause for concern for many individuals because they can feel self-conscious. An even bigger concern, though, is bone loss.
Consider this: When we lose a tooth, your body will immediately jump into action and “remove” the bone in your jaw that the tooth was anchored to starts to resorb or “melt”. In fact, studies show that we can lose as much as 40% of bone mass in the affected area in the first six months alone. This means that if you lose more than one tooth you might notice changes in the shape of your face. Losing a tooth can almost certainly “age” you. If you’re wearing removable dentures, because of missing teeth, you may be able to smile and eat certain foods, but dentures do not prevent bone loss.
Dentures can be supported with remaining teeth
You don’t have to have all of your teeth removed in order to wear dentures, if dentures are the route you choose to replace missing teeth. Partial dentures can be a temporary fix as they will help you chew foods, and smile again, but they have a tendency to slip up and down while eating and do not address bone loss. Consider too, if your teeth are damaged or broken down, it may not be feasible to save your teeth. Partial dentures need natural teeth to clasp onto.
Dental implants address both tooth and bone loss
Dental implants are a practical and healthy way to address both the loss of teeth and to prevent bone loss due to missing teeth. A dental implant can be placed in the area where you’re missing a tooth and the implants themselves will stimulate bone growth. This process will help you keep from looking aged because of a missing tooth – wearing dentures simply cannot prevent the changes that take place in your body when teeth are lost. With dental implants you do not have to have all of your teeth removed, either. The ultimate removal of teeth and the entire dental implant process is one that is tailored specifically to your individual needs and overall dental health as well as the final “smile outcome” you are seeking.
Good nutrition leads to good dental health
A healthy, well-balanced diet will go a long way in helping keep your teeth healthy. Avoiding carbonated drinks and sticky foods, like candy, will help prevent cavities as will brushing and regular dental check-ups and dental cleanings. The more nutrients you have in your body, the less it will have to draw from your own tissue to keep bones healthy. While good nutrition will not stop your body from reabsorbing the bone in your jaw if you lose a tooth, eating a healthy diet is wise for your overall health and well-being.
If you’ve lost teeth or if it’s been a while since you have seen a dentist for a cleaning or a dental check-up give our Buffalo, NY office a call. We specialize in working with patients who are afraid of dental visits and have myriad ways to help you feel comfortable and relaxed during your visits.