Why You Shouldn’t Wait to Get a Tooth Replacement
Dealing with tooth loss can be discouraging, but waiting to get a tooth replacement can make matters worse. Leaving an empty space where a tooth once was can lead to a host of complications that can require more extensive treatment down the road.
The risks of delayed tooth replacement
Adults at every age and stage of life should seek dental care if unexpected tooth loss occurs. Even children who lose a baby tooth prematurely may need a tooth replacement to avoid these risks.
Each tooth acts as a placeholder to keep everything in the mouth where it should be. When just one tooth is missing, it can cause everything to spread and shift, leading to a smile that is crooked.
Missing teeth can cause malocclusion or bite pattern issues. If a patient can no longer bite or chew properly, this can lead to jaw problems, including pain, stiffness, inflammation, and popping.
Damage to surrounding teeth
When a tooth is missing, the surrounding teeth have to endure more force and pressure than before. Over time, this can lead to chips, cracks, and breaks in otherwise healthy teeth. Getting a prompt tooth replacement can help eliminate the need for additional dental work.
Because missing teeth can affect a person's ability to bite and chew, various digestive problems can arise in a short period of time:
It can also increase the risk of choking, which can be life-threatening.
Teeth play an essential role in speech, and a missing tooth can impact the way people form sounds with their mouth. This is usually more of an issue with young children, but it can also create problems in adults and lead to improper speech habits and pronunciations.
Tooth replacement treatment options
There are many options for replacing a lost tooth. The decision usually comes down to a patient's personal preferences as well as current oral health.
For patients who want a minimally invasive option, dental bridges can be a good choice. The dentist prepares the adjacent teeth and places crowns that are connected to a prosthetic tooth, which fills the gap. While bridges are not the most natural-looking option, they are often used in the back of the mouth where the finished product is not very noticeable anyway.
Implants are a popular choice that offers realistic results and can be used on any tooth in the mouth. Dental implants require surgery and months for complete healing, but the results are designed to last a lifetime.
For patients facing significant tooth loss who do not have the bone or tooth structure to support other treatments, dentures may be the right solution. The removable appliances are custom-made to fit the patient's unique mouth.
Most dentists recommend a tooth replacement immediately after a tooth has been lost or extracted. Waiting for just a few weeks can lead to complications that could otherwise be avoided. A dentist can help patients choose the right treatment to replace a tooth and restore their smile.
Request an appointment here: https://gkdentaloffice.com or call GK Dental PC at (617) 826-6075 for an appointment in our Everett office.
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