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Missing Teeth and Bone Loss

Missing teeth diagram at Oregon Periodontics, P.C. The teeth are an integral component of your mouth. They allow you to bite and chew your food. They aid in proper speech. Moreover, they provide you with a beautiful, confident smile. Your teeth also play a critical role in the health of your jawbone. When you lose your teeth, no matter if it is just one or you lose an entire arch, all of the functions of your teeth are affected. You even begin to lose bone in the jaw, which can then lead to other serious issues. When you suffer tooth loss, Oregon Periodontics, P.C. is here to help.

Causes of Tooth Loss

One of the biggest causes of tooth loss is gum disease. As gum disease progresses, swollen gum tissue begins to pull away from the surfaces of your teeth, allowing your bacteria to fall below. The bacteria then begin to attack your jawbone and your periodontal ligaments, causing them to grow weaker. As a result, the teeth eventually become loose and fall out. While gum disease is the top cause of tooth loss, there are other causes as well, including:
•  Facial trauma.
•  Significant tooth decay.
•  Bruxism or the grinding and clenching of your teeth.

Missing Teeth and Your Jawbone

Your teeth play an integral role in the health of your jawbone. Every time you chew, the roots of the teeth stimulate the bone. This stimulation sends a message to your body that nutrients are needed. When you lose your teeth, whether it is just one or you lose several, there is less stimulation of the bone. As a result, the body is tricked into thinking that fewer nutrients are needed. With fewer nutrients, the jawbone begins to resorb and grow weak.

Effects of Bone Loss

As your jawbone grows weaker, it begins to change shape. This can have several significant impacts. The healthy adjacent teeth can begin to shift out of their natural alignment, throwing off your bite and causing significant joint pain. If you have lost several teeth, bone loss can also affect the shape of your face. Your lips and cheeks begin to sink in, facial skin sags, and you develop wrinkles.

Prevention of Bone Loss After Tooth Loss

There are a few options available to you after losing teeth. Traditional replacements such as bridges and dentures restore your abilities to bite, chew, and speak, and they also restore your smile and fill out your facial features. However, these options cannot stop the bone loss that follows tooth loss. Dental implants are a modern treatment for replacing missing teeth. This treatment uses small titanium posts that are surgically implanted into your jawbone to support crowns or your replacement teeth. While the crowns restore the visible portions of your missing teeth and their functions, the titanium posts act as replacement roots.

When you chew, the posts stimulate your jawbone just like your natural tooth roots, helping to stop and prevent bone loss in your jaw, allowing it to remain strong and healthy. Taking care of your teeth is essential for keeping them healthy and preventing tooth loss. However, if tooth loss does occur, immediate treatment is needed right away. While there are a few different options for replacing missing teeth, only dental implants can stop the bone loss associated with tooth loss, helping to maintain the integrity of the jaw. For more information, and to schedule your consultation, call Oregon Periodontics, P.C. today at (503) 575-7750.
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Oregon Periodontics

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11786 Southwest Barnes Rd Suite 210
Portland, OR 97225-5925

Office: (503) 575-7750
Fax: (503) 531-3560

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