It is possible to live without teeth. Navigating through life with missing teeth may not be the most pleasant experience, but it is certainly possible. Many of us can recall that previous generations in our own families lived and functioned with missing teeth. We can remember seeing our grandparents wearing dentures or partials, and most of us remember that one family member who simply chose to enjoy a toothless existence.
What we now know (and what the previous generations may have suspected), is that there are a number of health conditions that are directly related to tooth loss. As a result, research has begun to point towards dental implants as the most appropriate solution to tooth loss. Rather than endure life without teeth, patients are turning to an experienced implant dentist for help.
The consequences of tooth loss extend far beyond a change in your chewing habits or an unattractive gap between the teeth. A condition known as jawbone atrophy occurs when there is a lack of stimulation to the jawbone. Only a natural tooth root or an artificial tooth root such as a dental implant can properly stimulate the bone to prevent atrophy.
Also referred to as bone loss or bone resorption, jawbone atrophy is the condition in which the density and the quality of the jawbone decreases significantly. The shape of the underlying bone changes and these changes can become noticeable both inside and outside of the mouth. The appearance of the gum line becomes altered, even around neighboring teeth. The fit and feel of dentures and dental bridges can become altered as well.
Since a dental implant is fused or anchored to the jaw bone, it can provide the stimulation necessary to prevent jawbone atrophy. The normal actions of chewing and biting are enough to keep the bone vital and healthy. It is important to note that dental implants are the only tooth replacement solution available which can integrate with the jaw bone.
To get the most out of your tooth replacement solution, avoid making the decision to “just live” with your missing teeth. Contact our experienced team at Balcones Family Dental in North Austin to learn more about your options.