Approximately 120 million Americans have at least one missing tooth. These numbers are expected to increase exponentially over the next two decades. Tooth loss or edentulism is a condition that results in one or more missing teeth.
If ignored, edentulism can lead to:
Edentulism is mostly associated with the elderly, but it can also affect children and adults who neglect proper oral hygiene.
Main causes of tooth loss in the elderly can include:
Symptoms of edentulism usually include partial or total teeth loss. Other symptoms can be:
In the case of partial edentulism, your dentist may suggest preventive measures to keep the remaining teeth intact and healthy. Tooth replacement is the only option in case of total edentulism. Here are a few tooth restoration methods that may be recommended by your dentist:
A dental implant is a procedure that surgically attaches an artificial tooth root to the jaws. Dental implants give a natural look and are more stable and long-lasting. They stimulate the bone under the tooth, preventing bone loss.
Dentures are removable replacements for missing teeth and attached tissues. If you have some remaining natural teeth, partial dentures can fill up the missing spaces and help prevent the remaining teeth from shifting. Complete dentures are usually recommended in the case of complete teeth loss.
This is a process wherein a false tooth is attached between two porcelain crowns to bridge the space created by the missing tooth. The dental bridge supported by the two crowns is then cemented to the teeth on each side of the space. The bridge is thus secured into place and is non-removable.
Proper dental care, balanced diet, and regular check-ups go a long way in maintaining your oral health.
If you want to learn more about the causes and treatment of tooth loss, contact us. Remember, your trusted dentist in Des Moines is just a phone call away!