Leading Causes of Tooth Loss

middle aged couple sitting with cups of coffee in living room at home. Is the coffee making them look older?

Although declining, tooth loss remains common, especially among older Missourians. In fact, 43% of Missourians age 65 and older have lost six or more teeth. Why do people lose teeth? Just a few causes account for the majority of cases. 

Periodontal disease (Gum disease) is the leading cause of tooth loss among American adults. Gum disease develops when bacteria infect the area between the teeth and gums. This can destroy the gums and lead to bone loss around the teeth. Without the support of bone, your teeth can fall out. Brushing and flossing and professional cleanings can help reduce the risk of tooth loss to gum disease. Smoking significantly increases the risk of tooth loss from gum disease.

Tooth decay occurs when acid secreted by oral bacteria attacks your teeth. This first weakens the teeth, then creates holes in them called cavities. Cavities are extremely common. The number of people who will get a cavity at some point in their lives approaches 100%. However, repairing cavities with fillings can often protect and save your teeth. As with gum disease, brushing and flossing help prevent cavities. 

Injury can come in many forms that lead to tooth loss. Falls, car accidents, recreation accidents, and violence can all cause traumatic injuries that lead to tooth loss. To protect against this type of tooth loss, use appropriate safety equipment for your situation, such as safety belts and harnesses. Also, use a mouthguard when participating in sports, even recreational non-contact sports. 

Options to Replace Your Teeth

Dental implants are our most recommended tooth replacement option. Dental implants are anchored to your jawbone, allowing your restorations to look and function like natural teeth. You never have to worry about your restorations falling out because they’re secured firmly in place. Dental implants are a very flexible tooth replacement option and can replace a single missing tooth, an entire arch of teeth, and everything in between. 

Dental bridges use two dental implants or two adjacent teeth as anchors to secure the bridge. This option easily replaces your missing teeth with or without needing dental implants. However, there are limits to which teeth you can replace without dental implants. Dr. Hill will review your treatment plan with you to see if you’re a candidate for this type of dental bridge.

Implant dentures are full dentures secured to the jaw using dental implants. The support of dental implants allows the dentures to function and feel just like natural teeth. In some cases, dental implants are used primarily for retention. This means they hold the dentures in place but still feel and function like a traditional denture.

FOY ® Dentures are a new kind of denture technology that uses neuromuscular dentistry to improve the function and fit of dentures. Since they support your facial structures and may even rejuvenate your overall appearance.

Traditional & Partial Dentures replace an entire arch of teeth. They are false teeth held by suction and supported by your gums. Although they are attractive, they may not fit or function as well as other tooth replacement options at our St. Louis dental office.

Why You Should Replace Your Missing Teeth

When you lose a tooth or several teeth, it’s important to replace them. Here’s why you should replace your missing teeth with help from Dr. Chris Hill at Smile On Dental Studio.

First, you should replace your missing teeth to restore the appearance of your smile. All of our tooth replacement options can help you achieve a natural-looking smile you can’t help but show off. Restoring your smile will help you look great and maintain your self-confidence.

Another reason you should replace your missing teeth is to restore the function of your bite. Even one missing tooth can throw off your entire bite. All of our options will help maintain the function of your bite seamlessly. FOY® Dentures may even help you achieve a bite that’s better than your bite before you lost your teeth since it incorporates techniques belonging to neuromuscular dentistry.

Replacing your missing teeth helps support your facial structures. When teeth are worn and lost, or the jawbone diminishes, it can change your facial appearance. You may notice your face begin to droop and more wrinkles start to develop. Jowls and turkey neck may also appear as a result of bone loss. Replacing your missing teeth with FOY® Dentures or dental implants is the best way to support your facial structures while giving your smile a more radiant appearance.

Lastly, you should replace your missing teeth to protect your remaining teeth. When you don’t replace a tooth, it’s common for the neighboring teeth to move into the empty space. This can result in crooked teeth or even the wearing down of your teeth due to your bite being thrown off. Don’t sacrifice the health of your remaining teeth. Choose a replacement method that works for you. 

Replace Your Missing Teeth in St. Louis

Living with missing teeth can make eating, chewing, and smiling difficult. Explore our different tooth replacement options and find out which is best for you by scheduling an appointment with Smile On Dental Studio at our St. Louis location. Call our Richmond Heights, MO office at (314) 678-7876 today for an appointment with restorative dentist Chris Hill. You deserve a healthy, strong, and natural-looking smile. Restorative dental expert Dr. Chris Hill is happy to help.