Missing a tooth is not a rare thing for all people across the globe. Normally people lose their teeth due to injury, gum disease, etc. According to Harvard Health, average Americans lose 12 teeth by age 50! Missing even a tooth would not only affect your smile, but also have multiple adverse consequences on your oral health and quality of life.
Main risks associated with not replacing a missing tooth
- Misalignment of other teeth is a consequence of a missing tooth
Once a tooth is missed, the gap would provide room for adjacent teeth to shift which will lead to more crooked smile
- If a missing tooth is not replaced, the chance of infection increases
The empty space of a missing tooth is a perfect place for foods to get stuck and bacteria to collect, as the normal brushing wouldn’t cleanse the area completely. As such, it is easier for bacteria to not only enter into the bloodstream and cause infection inside the body, but also damage the root of adjacent teeth.
- A missing tooth deteriorates your Jaw bone and your gum
Jaw bone and gum are necessary for teeth to stay fixed in the right place. Surprisingly, teeth do the same role for jaw bone and gum health. In other words, tooth roots stimulate jaw bone and gum, so when a tooth is missed, no stimulation for bone and gum will be in place. Hence, jaw bone and gum deterioration becomes inevitable.
How to avoid the health risks associated with a missing tooth
Obviously, a missing tooth must be replaced. That’s the only way to avoid all risks. There are a few options for you to replace a missing tooth such as dental implants, implant supported bridge, tooth supported bridge, etc. However, the best option for replacing a missing tooth is dental implants, due to the reasons below:
- Dental implants provide the most natural look
- Adjacent teeth are not involved, so no damage to other teeth is possible
- No check-ups are needed for dental implants
- Dental implants last almost a lifetime
Considering the great benefits associated with dental implants to replace a missing tooth for the sake of better look and avoiding health risks, look for a professional dentist to get the job done for you.
What to expect when undergoing an implant treatment
The good news is that the surgery for replacing an implant is minor and painless for the majority of people, so don’t be afraid and start your treatment at your earliest possible. There are a few steps that you will go through when replacing your missing tooth with a dental implant. Let’s dive deep and see what they are.
- Access to jaw bone and bone grafting if required
Dentist makes cuts on your gum to expose your jaw bone to drill the holes. If grafting is needed, in case your jaw bone is not thick enough, the dentist would apply some grafting material to strengthen your jaw bone. It takes several month for the jaw bone to get ready for placing the implant
- Implant placement
Once the jaw bone is strong and thick enough, the dentist drills holes into the jaw bone to fix the implant metal into the bone. Once done, you must wait another few months for the bone to grow and unite with the implant metal
- Abutment placement
Now it’s time to attach the abutment to the implant metal. To do so, another minor surgery is required to remove the gum and attach the abutment to the implant metal
- Attach the artificial tooth
At last you are ready for an artificial tooth to be attached to the abutment which is the easiest part of the whole procedure.
How long does it take and how painful is it to place an implant
Every session takes 1 to 2 hours and the whole treatment including time required for jaw bone healing would be up to 9 months depending on the patient’s circumstances. In most cases local aesthetic is more than enough to kill the pain and finalize the surgery. As such, you must not be worried about feeling severe pain during the surgery. In case of feeling pain after surgery, OTC painkillers would help.
It’s quite important to take action, if you have a missing tooth, in order to replace it with a dental implant as soon as possible. Make sure to consult with your dentist if you have a missing tooth for a solution that suits your conditions best. Dorsa Family Dentistry is more than happy to help, if you are in need. Feel free to contact us and book for a check-up session and we will provide you with a proper treatment based on your case.