The severity of the effects of missing teeth is mostly dependent upon the individual situation. However, generally, the more teeth that are lost the more aggressive the consequences.
Also, the longer we leave the missing teeth unreplaced, the more deterioration can be seen and subsequently the treatment plan to restore the mouth can be more complex.
Al-Fa Perio offers leading tooth replacement treatments such as dental implants. We carry out your treatment planning and treatment at our London clinic.
The primary consequence that occurs after a tooth has been lost is bone loss, also called bone atrophy, that follows. The extent of bone atrophy is dependent upon the severity and trauma of the extraction process and which particular tooth has been lost.
There will be less associated bone loss with anterior (front) teeth than posterior (back) teeth since the back teeth have more roots embedded in the bone. Also, the more length of time between tooth loss and its replacement the greater the bone loss that will occur.
As bone density diminishes, bone formation can also change. This causes incessant problems with the fitting surfaces of dentures causing them to become progressively unstable and loose.
Eventually, removable dentures help in the mouth via either retention clasps or muscular contractions.
Bone loss occurs since the bone is no longer stimulated with biting. It behaves much like muscles that are no longer being used; it simply resorbs and regresses away.
The gum simply follows the regression of the bone. This can affect the aesthetics of the mouth and smile. Read more on laser gum treatments.
As a direct consequence of bone loss, outward facial appearance can also be negatively impacted. As more teeth are lost, the cheeks and lip support are also lost and can lead to a hollow or asymmetrical facial appearance.
There is a wide range of cascading biological responses that occur as a direct consequence of the loss of a tooth, especially if the tooth is not replaced sooner rather than later.
One particular range of events occurs due to the movement of the other neighbouring teeth that surround the missing tooth.
Other teeth are more like to want to ‘grow” into the space left by the missing tooth. So, you end up getting neighbouring teeth that tilt, rotate and over-erupt into space.
As these teeth move, they leave small spaces on the other side of them causing their neighbouring teeth to also move. This can eventually lead to unsightly smiles and deteriorating aesthetics.
Also, if left unchecked, stagnation areas can be created in the mouth which are difficult to access to clean and hence develop infections. This can lead to further loss of teeth in the future. How do we lose teeth?
Chewing ability reduced
One of the effects missing teeth have is on the chewing ability – reduced number of teeth means that the rest of the dentition has to pick up the biting pressures.
The more teeth that are missing, the less ability the person has to chew their food efficiently.
Another side effect is that the remaining teeth become more worn out at an increasingly rapid rate. Tooth wear can cause teeth to become more sensitive and can eventually develop fractures in them.
This means that in the future those teeth will also need to be restored further increasing the complexity of treatment and expenses.
The front teeth are used when pronouncing certain syllables in speech. For example, the front incisors are used to make the sounds “F”, “V” and “S”. Hence, when they are lost, the speech too can be negatively affected.
It goes without saying that missing teeth can have a detrimental aesthetic and cosmetic effect, especially if the lost teeth are more near the front of the mouth and the spaces visible when smiling.
This can also have a psychological effect and cause much anxiety and depression.
This can be either due to the physical loss of teeth or the lifestyle disability due to wearing unstable and uncomfortable dentures.
At Al-Fa Perio, we carefully plan your dental implant treatment to achieve the best possible results. By replacing your missing tooth, we can build a long-lasting, healthy oral foundation for you.