Effects of Missing Teeth

Missing tooth before getting Implant crown

There are many issues that can affect the condition of your teeth. Poor oral hygiene practices can lead to cavities and gum disease. Facial trauma, biting down on something too hard, and conditions like bruxism can cause physical damage to your teeth. These issues can result in tooth loss, which has several significant effects on your life. If you have suffered tooth loss, The Center for Cosmetic Dentistry can help.

Tooth Loss and Your Smile

One of the most obvious effects of tooth loss is the impact that the event has on the quality of your smile. Missing teeth leaves gaps in your smile, which impacts your appearance and causes your confidence to decline. When you are self-conscious of your smile, it shows. You might try to hide your smile or avoid smiling altogether. This can give off the wrong impression, affecting how others see you.

Trouble Eating

Your teeth play a critical role in your abilities to bite and chew your food. Chewing is the first stage of digestion. This action breaks down the foods you eat, which allows your body to absorb nutrients later in the digestive process. Difficulties not only impact the foods can eat, but it can also impact your digestion. In addition to not being able to eat many of your favorite foods, you are not able to properly break down what you do eat. This prevents your body from properly digesting what you eat, which can lead to malnutrition.

Your Speech Suffers

Your teeth control airflow when you speak. They allow you to form a variety of different words and sounds, allowing you to communicate effectively with others. When you suffer tooth loss, you are no longer able to properly control airflow. This leads to the development of a lisp and other speech complications. The more teeth you lose, the more difficult it becomes to communicate effectively. You may find that others have a harder time understanding you and that you need to repeat yourself more often.

Tooth Loss and Your Jawbone

One of the lesser known roles of your teeth is the role they play in the health of your jawbone.

  • When you chew, the teeth stimulate the jawbone, which tells your body to send essential nutrients.
  • When you suffer tooth loss, your jawbone loses the stimulation from those missing teeth.
  • Because of this, your body mistakenly believes that fewer nutrients are sent and therefore begins sending less.
  • Over time, this lack of nutrients causes the jawbone to become weaker.

As the bone weakens, it begins to change shape. Adjacent teeth can begin to shift out of alignment, which alters your bite. Your risk for tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth damage increases. Shifting teeth can also lead to issues such as bruxism and TMJ disorder. Additionally, changes in the shape of your jaw can alter the shape of your face. Your face may begin to take on a sunken appearance. Your skin begins to sag and wrinkles form. As a result, you may begin to look older than you are.

Questions About Tooth Loss

Replacing missing teeth following tooth loss is essential for restoring the functions of your mouth, your smile, and your overall quality of life. If you have suffered tooth loss, call Dr. Shapiro to schedule your appointment today.