You depend on your teeth to eat, talk, and smile. But it’s also important to remember that your oral health affects the rest of your body. For example, patients with missing teeth will also experience bone loss in their jaws and eventual facial collapse. The good news is that we can prevent this bone loss by replacing missing teeth with dental implants.
Patients who replace missing teeth are able to:
- Smile with confidence
- Speak without slurring or lisping their words
- Enjoy better nutrition
- Prevent further tooth loss
- Avoid jawbone deterioration
Smile with Confidence
Your smile says a lot about your personality. But it’s hard to make a good first impression if you feel self-conscious about your teeth.
Some of the patients we’ve worked with have developed a habit of covering their mouth while laughing or smiling with their lips closed to hide missing teeth. This can make it difficult for these patients to feel confident during job interviews, dates, meetings, and other times when first impressions are important.
The good news is that there are plenty of tooth replacement options to restore the appearance of your smile. For example, Dr. Yun may recommend a dental bridge, dentures, or dental implants to fill any gaps left by missing teeth.
Speak Without Slurring or Lisping Your Words
When you speak, your lips and tongue touch the inner surfaces of your teeth. To understand this better, read the following sentence out loud and notice how many times you touch your teeth. “Teresa saw a zebra at the zoo.”
In general, you may have more difficulty pronouncing words with “t,” “th,” “s,” or “z” sounds once you lose a tooth. Losing front teeth may especially affect your ability to speak clearly without a lisp. But this can be corrected with, dental implants, or a dental bridge.
Enjoy Better Nutrition
Missing teeth make eating the foods you love difficult and even painful. If you limit your diet to only what your teeth can handle, you miss out on many important nutrients. Our dentist can help you explore your tooth replacement options (including) so you never have to worry about missing out on healthy foods.
Prevent Further Tooth Loss
Each tooth in your mouth provides support for the teeth around it. This means that once you lose one tooth, the teeth near the empty socket lose part of their support. Over time, these adjacent teeth will tilt toward the open space and loosen. As your remaining teeth move and become unstable, your risk of tooth decay and further tooth loss increases.
Avoid Jawbone Deterioration
Your body is able to detect when you lose a tooth and will start to absorb the minerals in your jaw to use elsewhere. As a result, the area of the jaw around the empty socket will start to deteriorate. The patient may eventually experience facial collapse, which changes the shape of the face and makes dentures difficult to wear.
Unlike other options, dental implants exert pressure on your jawbone as a natural tooth would. This helps prevent bone loss in the jaw so you can restore and maintain good oral health for a lifetime.
A dental implant is a prosthetic tooth root made of a titanium alloy that we place in your jaw. Once the implant fuses to your jawbone during a process called osseointegration, we’ll cover the implant with a dental crown. Together, the implant, abutment, and crown give you the function and appearance of a natural tooth.
Request an Appointment With Dr. Yun
Dr. Suk Jun Yun is a respected dental implant dentist in Grand Rapids, MI. To request an appointment, contact the NorthPointe Family Dental & Implant Center at firstname.lastname@example.org. During your consultation, Dr. Yun will determine if you’re a candidate for dental implants and help walk you through your next steps.
This blog post has been updated.