If you’re missing a tooth in the front of your mouth, one of the most obvious reasons to replace it is aesthetics. After all, you would prefer to be remembered for your great personality rather than your incomplete smile. But what if your missing tooth is in the back of your mouth? If no one will notice it, is there a point to getting it replaced? Yes! As your implant dentist explains, it is important to replace any missing teeth — even ones at the back of your mouth.
The Consequences of Missing Teeth
A healthy mouth has at least 28 teeth. When these teeth are well-aligned, they provide you with a strong, comfortable bite. They all work together to protect your oral health and maintain your smile’s appearance. If even one tooth goes missing, you could face a number of unpleasant consequences:
- Over time, the bone that supported the tooth will deteriorate. This can lead to changes in your face shape.
- The teeth adjacent to the gap may drift out of place, leading to misalignment and malocclusion (bad bite).
- A misaligned bite can lead to temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD), a painful condition that causes jaw discomfort, headaches, and a number of other symptoms.
- The teeth opposite the gap may over-erupt and eventually fall out.
- Missing teeth mean that you cannot evenly distribute food throughout your mouth when you’re chewing. This may lead to premature wear and tear on your remaining teeth.
- Missing teeth may increase your chances of developing gum disease.
The Best Way to Replace a Missing Tooth
Ideally, as soon as you know that you need to have a tooth extracted, you should start talking to your dentist about replacing that tooth. The sooner you’re able to fill in the gap, the less likely it is that you will suffer from bone loss, migration of your remaining teeth, and other problems that come with an incomplete set of pearly whites.
Your dentist is likely to recommend that you choose dental implants to replace your missing teeth. They are often the best option because:
- They form a bond with your body, which helps to prevent bone loss. No other tooth replacement option offers this advantage.
- They are extremely strong, which enables you to munch on all of your favorite goodies without worrying that’ll cause damage to either your gums or your new tooth.
- They look natural. You’ll be able to open your mouth wide for a hearty laugh without being concerned that someone will see your tooth replacement and figure out that you’ve had some work done.
Are you missing one of your back teeth? Please consider getting it replaced as soon as possible so you can maintain a healthy mouth and a happy smile.
About the Dentist
Dr. Tim Stirneman has decades of experience in dentistry, and he had undergone extensive training in dental implants. He truly enjoys helping his patients to reap the benefits of a strong, new smile. If you would like to talk to him about whether implants are right for you, please contact us at 847-854-7645.