How Do Missing Teeth Affect Your Jaw?
Getting older is inevitable. While you can avoid looking older temporarily, our bodies tend to lose vigor as soon as we hit past age 30. Some people even experience it much earlier. In our clinic, we here at San Tan Oral Surgery frequently find people aged 60 and up with severe edentulism. This is the state in which people have already lost most of their teeth. At this point, they can no longer eat solid foods without either dentures or implants. Edentulism also takes a toll on the jaw. With all the changes and damage it makes, we like to educate our valued patients to help prevent tooth loss from occurring to help prevent that lost vigor with your oral health.
Effects Of Losing A Single Tooth
For most people, losing one or two teeth barely affects their way of life. While a missing front tooth can have a significant impact on your confidence and self-esteem, this can be easily fixed with a simple bridge installation or dental implant.
What does have a lasting effect, however, is the decrease in volume of a bony layer underneath the teeth, called the alveolar ridge. This layer holds the teeth in socket-shaped holes, which pushes them out of the gums. We also place implants directly on this layer, which is sturdy enough to hold small dental posts.
When you lose a tooth, the area directly under it tends to shrink over time. This makes the gums appear deflated when seen from overhead. Your body does this to save energy. Maintaining this ridge takes resources away from the body and not having any tooth to support means the area is wasting energy. While losing this area does not have much of a significant effect on the overall health of your jaw, losing more of it can change the overall structure of your jaw.
Losing More Teeth
After losing a certain amount of teeth and alveolar ridge volume, your lower jaw will start to tilt outwards. This makes the gums touch together, letting you rub them against each other as makeshift teeth.
While this natural process used to help our ancestors who have lost most of their teeth in ancient times, this still drastically affects millions of edentulism patients negatively. Chewing problems aside, the gums can feel painful and lower your appetite. Their new shape also changes your speech pattern. Talking becomes harder and gives you a certain lisp that becomes worse as your jaw protrudes more.
How We Can Help
Luckily, newer developments in dental technologies mean you no longer need to suffer these unnecessary problems. The answer to these only consists of new teeth that last a long time. Fortunately, with our dental expertise, we can make these with the best quality of materials you will ever find.
We are pleased to offer numerous solutions to our patients to help restore their beautiful and healthy smiles. At San Tan Oral Surgery, we make sure that your new teeth will protect your jaws and speech much better. Please give us a call at (480) 604-2592 so we can help you schedule an appointment at our office.