If you have lost a few of your teeth, you may be anxious to have them replaced. The replacement of missing teeth can improve the look of your smile, but there are additional benefits associated with replacing lost teeth. Here are a few of them.
Prevention of Bone Loss
The teeth play indispensable roles in the maintenance of the girth and strength of the jawbones. The bone in which the roots of the teeth are located is called the alveolar ridge.
As the roots of a tooth transfer bite pressure to the ridge, the bone tissue responds to the stimulation by creating additional bone cells. The consistent production of the new cells helps keep the jawbone thick and strong.
After the loss of a tooth, the area along the alveolar ridge where the tooth once resided may no longer receive enough stimulation to maintain its health. Thus, the bone may start to deteriorate. As the tissue atrophies, it may provide less support to the other teeth, making them more susceptible to loss.
If several teeth are missing from the same palate, the shrinking jawbone may cause multiple changes to the facial structure. The bone supports the soft tissues of the face. With less support, the tissues may start to sag.
By replacing lost teeth with dental implants, you can ensure that your jawbone continues to receive the stimulation that it needs. The implants, which are artificial tooth roots, still transfer chewing pressure to the alveolar ridge.
Prevention of Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Problems
Your bite refers to the way that the teeth of the upper palate fit over those of the lower palate when the mouth is closed. When you lose your teeth, you can cause problems with your bite. In turn, bite issues can lead to trouble with your temporomandibular joints.
People who suffer from TMJ problems often experience difficult symptoms, such as neck pain, shoulder discomfort, back pain, headaches, and problems opening the mouth. By replacing lost teeth, you can help keep your bite properly balanced and aligned.
Prevention of Migrating Teeth
Even though your teeth may have been in a proper alignment before the loss of one or more teeth, the spaces along the alveolar ridge from missing teeth can promote dental shifting. With more space to move about, teeth that are near a gap in the mouth may drift from their original positions, leading to dental misalignment. The replacement of missing teeth fills the gaps, blocking the migration of adjacent teeth.
If you have lost one or more of your teeth and would like to have them replaced, schedule a consultation with local dental services.