44345 Premier Plaza
Ashburn, VA 20147
Advanced Dental Care
1602 Village Market Blvd SE
Leesburg, VA 20175
Importance Of Having All Of Your Teeth – Natural Or Artificial
A healthy smile can truly transform our visual appearance, the positivity of our mind-set, as well as improving the health of not only our mouth but our body too.
But what exactly is the importance of having all of our teeth?
The teeth help to hold the cheeks and the lips in place giving us a younger and fuller look to our faces. Without teeth the cheeks are able to “sink” in to the face more and we begin to look like we have a different appearance than we did with teeth. This happens in the back of the mouth with the cheeks just as much as it does in the front with the lips. You can imagine that as we remove teeth in the front of the mouth not only will our smile be lacking the teeth, but the lips will “sink” back into the mouth giving us a more pronounced chin and nose.
When we’re missing teeth it is hard, if not impossible, to pronounce “f,” “sh,” or “ch” sounds. If you have missing teeth your speech can end up sounding slurred or lisped.
Effects on Jaw Bone and Gum
When you lose a tooth, it disturbs the interplay between teeth and bone. Because gum and bone are no longer stimulated well enough due to the missing tooth, the jaw bone starts shrinking and your gum pulls back. This can weaken neighboring teeth until they collapse. Teeth in the opposite jaw can then start growing into the gap.
The more teeth are missing, the more challenging it can become to replace them.
Keeping Our Natural Teeth
By brushing our teeth twice daily, maintaining a low-in-sugar diet and regularly visiting our dental professional, we can help reduce the risk of such diseases like dental decay and gum disease – both of which can result in tooth loss.
Tooth loss through dental decay and gum disease are almost entirely preventable and there’s no reason why, with a good daily oral health routine, we cannot keep our teeth for life.
However, if you have lots of bad, broken, painful, infected, loose or decayed teeth then sometimes the best or only way to deal with them is to have them removed. They can be a constant source of pain and infection. But losing all your teeth is losing a unique and important part of yourself. You use them every day and it is going to affect the quality of your life.
Teeth are the most noticeable part of your smile and your smile (or the fact that you avoid or don’t smile at all) will make important impressions on other people when they meet you. Many people are prone to making snap judgments based on first impressions and you better believe that your looks and smile play a part in that. Teeth support your lips and cheeks and the loss of them will change your profile and face shape. Your jaws will over close and the vertical height of your profile will shrink and that look is what is commonly associated with aging.
So yes, having bad teeth removed is better than dealing with the daily pain and infection, but they serve such an important role that some kind of replacement is necessary. You will also want to make sure your dentist or surgeon has a chance to review all necessary x-rays and evaluate your health history to ensure the removal of the teeth goes smoothly and that you understand the post operative instructions and can care for the extraction sites properly.
Dentures are probably the most common replacement for a full arch of missing teeth. Understand though that dentures are a prosthetic. Like losing an arm or leg, a replacement can be made but there are always limitations on what you can do and physical therapy, re-learning of simple things, and accepting the limitations of your new prosthetic must happen for you to begin functioning again.
Denture issues can usually be summed up with problems in comfortably wearing them, loss of bite strength, and problems with retention (too much movement or loose fit). Well fitted dentures and a well-adjusted patient with the right attitude can overcome some of these problems.
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root that is surgically anchored into your jaw to hold a replacement tooth or bridge in place. The benefit of using implants is that they don’t rely on neighboring teeth for support and they are permanent and stable. Implants are a good solution to tooth loss because they look and feel like natural teeth.
Implant material is made from different types of metallic and bone-like ceramic materials that are compatible with body tissue. There are different types of dental implants: the first is placed directly into the jaw bone, like natural tooth roots; the second is used when the jaw structure is limited, therefore, a custom-made metal framework fits directly on the existing bone.
Latest In Implants
- Implant restoration can be done in a day (Teeth In A Day)
- Procedures can be done with Sedation or Local Anesthesia
How Do Dental Implants Work?
Strategically placed, implants can now be used to support permanently cemented bridges, eliminating the need for a denture. The cost tends to be greater, but the implants and bridges more closely resemble real teeth.
Can Anyone Receive Dental Implants?
Talk with your dentist about whether you are an implant candidate. You must be in good health and have the proper bone structure and healthy gums for the implant to stay in place. People who are unable to wear dentures may also be good candidates. If you suffer from chronic problems, such as clenching or bruxism, or systemic diseases, such as diabetes, the success rate for implants decreases dramatically. Additionally, people who smoke or drink alcohol may not be good candidates.
What Is The Cost Of Implants?
Since implants involve surgery and are more involved, they cost more than traditional bridgework. However, some dental procedures and portions of the restoration may be covered by dental and medical insurance policies. Your dentist can help you with this process.
To sum it up, if you can save your natural teeth then do so. Nothing works as good as what nature gave you. Sometime the extent of the damage may dictate that removal of the teeth. In that case, plan for life after teeth. Work with your dentist to become educated about realistic expectation of what dentures or implants can do for you.