The Space Between: What Causes Tooth Loss?

By John Rink DDS on April 12, 2016

The anatomy of a toothDr. John Rink is a leading dentist, helping patients have healthy smiles that look great. His Charleston general dentistry practice offers a whole host of treatments that improve dental wellness as well as smile aesthetics.

This is great news for people who are missing a tooth or multiple teeth. Let's consider the causes of tooth loss and briefly note some treatment options.

The Cosmetic and Health Issues Related to Tooth Loss

Tooth loss can cause cosmetic issues as well as general dental wellness problems.

On the aesthetic side, missing teeth result in gaps that can prove unsightly. This can leave you self-conscious about smiling, speaking, and laughing, even around people you have known for many years.

On the general wellness side, missing a tooth or a few teeth can make it more difficult to eat some of your favorite foods. The tooth loss can also result in loss of bone density and gum recession in the areas of the tooth gaps.

What causes all of these issues? Let's look at some common problems.

Severe Tooth Decay

When a tooth is severely decayed, it is extremely weak and more likely to break or simply fall out as a result of normal biting and chewing. This is why it's so important to brush and floss regularly.

Advanced Gum Disease

Gum disease is a bacterial infection of the gum tissue that leads to a number of serious problems if left untreated. Gum disease comes in three stages:

  • Gingivitis
  • Periodontitis
  • Advanced periodontitis

In serious cases of gum disease, teeth can come loose and fall out due to serious issues with gum tissue inflammation.

Root Canal Infections

Within each tooth is a bundle of soft tissue known as dental pulp. When oral bacteria reaches this pulp, it can lead to serious pain. Root canal infections, when not caught soon enough, will sometimes result in tooth extraction simply to alleviate the pain a patient feels.

Dental Injuries During Accidents

Auto accidents, vehicle accidents, and major slips or falls can result in tooth loss if your fall on your face of suffer a blow to the head.

Contact and Combat Sports

If you play contact sports or combat sports, you know that injuries are a risk you take. Tooth loss can occur with mouth injuries or any blows to the face and head. That's why wearing helmets and mouth guards is so important for preventing tooth loss and tooth damage.

Physical Altercations

If you are assaulted or get involved in a fight of any kind, being struck in the face or head can result in a tooth being damaged or knocked loose.

Treatments for Missing Teeth

For most people, the ideal treatments for missing teeth are dental bridges and dentures. These appliances fill up gaps between teeth and allow people to laugh and smile as they normally would. In some cases, people may have their dental appliances supported by dental implants, which are artificial tooth roots surgically anchored into place.

During a consultation at our practice, we can go over all of these matters in greater detail, helping you

Contact the Charleston Center for Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry

If you have a lost a tooth or multiple teeth and would like to learn more about your options for treatment, be sure to contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. Dr. John Rink and his team will help you have a healthy and beautiful smile.

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