Senior's

Solutions for Missing Teeth

The problem of broken down or missing teeth can be easily remedied in most cases. However, ignoring these dental problems may cause additional tooth and bone loss which can lead to more expensive treatments. That's why it is better to take care of minor problems right away, before they get bigger and more expensive to repair.

Replacing missing teeth will help you to keep and maintain the health of your smile for a long time. Unlike baby teeth, we want to keep our permanent teeth as long as we can. Gum disease is the leading cause of missing teeth in adults. It can be prevented or stopped by keeping your mouth as clean as possible through daily brushing, flossing, and regular check-ups.

Gaps between teeth can occur naturally or when teeth have been lost. A gap between the front two teeth, called a diastema, is natural for some; many choose to have it closed for cosmetic reasons although a diastema poses no harm to oral health. People often live with spaces between their back teeth for years because they do not cause a cosmetic problem. However, these spaces can lead to dental problems.

Nature's Balancing Act

When spaces are present due to missing teeth, movement will occur. If left untreated, other teeth will drift and tip into unoccupied areas. Teeth also migrate into spaces when opposing teeth are missing. To keep all your permanent teeth functioning and in their correct position, you need to replace missing teeth to maintain long term oral health.

Fixed Permanent Solutions

Missing teeth may set off a chain reaction of dental problems over time that can change your bite and develop food traps. This can cause bad breath, tooth decay, periodontal disease and bone loss. Depending on the circumstances involved, fixed dental devices, like bridges or dental implants, may be a solution to restore the function of your teeth and improve oral health. Even orthodontics may be recommended to return the teeth to a more ideal position to improve function and/or cosmetics.

"Take Out" Solutions

Upper or lower dentures usually are the best solution for persons with no teeth. In situations where many teeth are missing, but the remaining teeth are stable and healthy, a removable partial denture may be recommended. "Partials" allow patients to keep their remaining healthy teeth and replace missing teeth to restore form and function. Precision partials use fixed crowns and special attachments to secure the partial and eliminate the need for conventional clasping methods. The removable design of a full or partial denture allows for daily cleaning and periodic adjustment or replacement.

The Final Choice Is Yours

Usually, there is more than one restorative solution for repairing broken-down and missing teeth. A consultation with your dentist will help you choose the best restorative solution for your situation. You can help keep your permanent teeth longer by replacing missing teeth, brushing and flossing daily, and having regular dental check-ups and professional tooth cleanings. Stopping smoking or chewing tobacco and maintaining good nutrition will also help you achieve the optimum in oral health.

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