DO I REALLY NEED TO REPLACE A MISSING TOOTH THAT NO ONE CAN SEE?
Losing a front tooth would probably act quickly to get it replaced. A gap in the center of your smile is very noticeable. But if one of your back teeth goes missing, it is easy to not be eager to get it replaced. Especially, if you can still chew your food comfortably and no one can see the lost tooth. Additionally, it might not seem logical to spend time and money on getting it replaced.
However, there are big reasons why people with missing back teeth should consider having them replaced with dental implants. Consider some of the reasons.
Did you know your teeth have a natural capacity for movement? When all of your teeth are in place, they prevent each other from drifting away from their proper positions. Unfortunately, when a tooth goes missing, the adjacent teeth have the potential to begin to shift. This can lead to a misaligned bite.
If you lose a bottom tooth, the tooth that was directly above it could even begin to over-erupt. The tooth may even extend so far out of the gum line that it has to be removed. A dental implant can serve as a placeholder and prevent dental drift and potential related complications.
TMD (TEMPOROMANDIBULAR DISORDER)
You may have heard the term “Occlusion”. “Occlusion” refers to how your upper and lower teeth fit together, also referred to as your bite. Harmonious occlusion makes sure your jaw joint and surrounding muscles are exposed to as little stress as possible. Malocclusion, in contrast, can potentially strain your TMJ (your jaw joint) and lead to TMJ dysfunction (otherwise known as TMD).
Even one missing tooth at the back of the mouth increases your risk of malocclusion and TMD. TMD, in turn, may result in chronic jaw pain, frequent headaches, and other unpleasant symptoms. By contributing to a healthy bite, a dental implant can reduce your risk of such issues.
Almost immediately after the loss of a tooth, the supporting bone begins to be resorbed. That means, your body recycles the raw materials for other purposes. Unfortunately, the process can seriously weaken your jawbone and may even affect your facial aesthetics. A dental implant serves as a prosthetic tooth root, stimulating the jawbone and helping to keep it healthy, strong, and whole.
Even if you chew on the side of your mouth that is opposite from your missing tooth, food particles have the potential to collect in the space and irritate the gums. An implant helps to protect this sensitive tissue and can reduce the chances of pain.
A missing tooth is a big deal, no matter where it is in your mouth! If you have lost a molar, it is worth your time to schedule an appointment with Summerfield Family Dentistry to discuss tooth replacement options.
If you would like more information about toothbrushes and your dental health, please contact Summerfield Family Dentistry by calling 336-643-1440 to schedule a consultation appointment.
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