Problems with missing teeth.

 In Dental Implants

Missing Teeth. Big Problems.

If you have a missing tooth or missing teeth, there may be problems that you may encountered. So you got a missing tooth or a few missing teeth, what is the big deal? One of the main problems with missing teeth is that the adjacent and opposing teeth will shift and/or tilt into the empty spaces where teeth are missing. Of course, this shifting takes years to occur. The tilted or shifted teeth can trap food and lead to gum disease or cavities. Prolonged gum disease can lead to bone loss around the tilted tooth (also know as periodontal disease). If this continues to progress without treatment by a dentist, the tilted tooth may be lost. The lost of another tooth can cause further shifting/tilting of the teeth. This can lead to a “dominoes” effect eventually resulting in the collapse of the bite on that side of the mouth. A collapsed bite can lead to excessive force on the jaw joint called the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Consequently, the TMJ can become painful and it can be very difficult to chew or talk comfortably.

It can challenging to eat food with missing teeth, especially hard textured food. Chewing can talk longer and eating may not be enjoyable anymore. Furthermore, eating only on one side of the jaw for an entire meal can cause the jaw muscles to become sore on the chewing side. Often, patients will use their tongues to keep pushing the food constantly to the chewing side. This can cause fatigue of the tongue and eating food becomes more work than enjoyment.

When a tooth is lost, the jawbone shrinks from the lack of stimulation of the bone. The more teeth that are missing, the more the jaw bones will melt away. When the jawbones melt away, the fullness and the youthful appearance of the face disappears. The skin of the face and the face will droop resulting in an “aged” appearance.

There are many options present to replace missing teeth. Consult your dentist to discuss your options: dentures, bridges and dental implants.

Visit for more information.

Writtern by Ronald M. Achong D.M.D., M.D.    (Board Certified Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon)   Offices Orlando and Clermont.   352-243-5599

Orlando Maxillofacial Surgeon

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