Not sure how to replace your lost teeth? Wonder if your replacements could work a little better? Ideally, you should retain all of your natural teeth for life, but in all honesty, many people have trouble maintaining ideal dental health every day of their lives. Teeth are routinely knocked out or subjected to destructive infections (cavities), or lost to aggressive gum disease as it destroys the gums and jawbone that support teeth. Regardless of how you lost your teeth, you may have a few questions regarding the best way to replace them, or about improving the comfort and function of your current dental prosthesis.
I’ve only lost one tooth. Do I have to replace it?
Quantity is a good measure of severity. For instance, one lost tooth isn’t as immediately-dire as losing most or all of your teeth. That’s not to say, however, that you can freely ignore your single lost tooth without consequence. Remaining teeth can shift to take up the slack in your bite, and the imbalanced pressure can damage the teeth that remain. In short, yes, you have to replace it.
I’ve lost several, but not all of my teeth. How do I replace them?
The beauty of modern dentistry lies largely in variety. Your appropriate dental prosthesis depends on the number and pattern of the teeth you’ve lost. For one tooth, or a few of them in a row, a dental bridge can close the gap with an appropriate number of connected replacement teeth. Teeth that aren’t in a row may require a partial denture to replace, which is designed to fill in the scattered gaps of your smile while fitting around existing teeth.
Why do my dentures keep losing their grip?
Patients who’ve lost all of their teeth on one or both dental ridges typically find hope in dentures to restore their smile’s beauty and function. A denture is a row of replacement that sits on a custom-fit, gum-colored plastic base. The base is designed to fit snugly on your dental ridge, and is held in place by adhesives. After losing your teeth’s roots, however, your jawbone can suffer from a significant decrease in bloodflow, causing it to shrink and your dentures to lose their grip.
Do dental implants work for everybody?
Dental implants are prosthetic root devices that are inserted into the jawbone, and can support your dental bridge, denture, or a crown for single tooth replacement. Most patients with a fully-developed jawbone can be suitable candidates for dental implants, but must first meet a few important requirements. A weak jawbone can be fortified with a jawbone graft, and your teeth and gums will have to be treated if you exhibit cavities or gum disease.
About Your Livonia Dentist:
As a highly experienced general and cosmetic dentist, Dr. Stewart is dedicated to helping all of our patients enjoy the benefits of a healthy, beautiful smile. James Steward, DDS, and our compassionate staff proudly serve patients of all ages from Livonia, Farmington Hills, Plymouth, Northville, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, and all surrounding communities. To schedule an appointment, call our office today at (734) 425-4400.