Whether you?ve had a tooth extracted or it just never grew in, a question that you may be asking yourself is whether or not you need to have your tooth replaced. It?s a great question to ask and one that definitely deserves an answer. So, the short answer is, ?Yes? your tooth should be replaced. But, I don?t want to stop there, so let’s talk about why your tooth should be replaced sooner rather than later.
When a tooth is lost or extracted it does more than just leave a space in your mouth where a tooth should be. This missing tooth can affect the way that you bite, your teeth can start shifting into the empty space, it makes it easier for decay to form in your mouth, it can affect the structure of your mouth and face, and it can cause more problems to the teeth adjacent to the edentulous area. Let’s go into detail on some of these:
How A Missing Tooth Affects Your Bite
When you are missing a tooth you may find it hard to bite into foods that were once easy for you to bite into. If you?re a lover of good food, much like I am, you may find it frustrating when you go to pick out your meals and find that you?re second-guessing whether or not you?re going to be able to eat them like you use to. Every tooth in your mouth plays a big role in the foods that you can bite into and chew. So, when you have a missing tooth, it can affect each and every one of the ones that remain and your ability to eat certain foods.
Additionally, as I mentioned earlier, the other teeth can start moving into the position of that missing tooth because teeth are always moving. ?Let’s say you are missing a molar on the lower right side of your mouth. ?The tooth on top will grow into the space below, the two teeth on either side of the missing space will start to rotate and tip into that space as well. ?These types of movements can lead to a myriad of issues, like not being able to clean your teeth well, not being able to place an implant without having orthodontic treatment first, difficulty eating, and so on.
I also have to mention that when you loose the support by having a missing tooth, your other teeth take the extra pressure. ?Over time, that can cause your other teeth to get loose, it can cause periodontal disease, and a myriad of other issues. ?It’s always ideal to have the forces placed on your teeth distributed evenly.
How A Missing Tooth Causes Decay In Your Mouth
When you have an opening where a tooth should be it makes it so that bacteria can get into the deeper pockets of your gums and that bacteria can grow and cause other issues for you. Once the bacteria starts to form it can spread to other areas of your mouth affecting the healthy teeth that you still have in your mouth. Which means that you?ll end up having to spend more time and money getting other areas fixed.
How A Missing Tooth Affects Your Face Structure
Your teeth help create the structure for your face and specifically your jaw, mouth. ? Really, the teeth are the only thing that are supporting your lips. ?So, it makes sense that if one of them is missing, then the structure is not going to look the same, right? ?This change in structure can cause your lips to wrinkle and even make your mouth look as if it?s sunken in. These changes can cause you to appear older and affect how you feel about the way that you look.
So, while it?s not a requirement that you have a missing tooth replaced, it is something that I highly recommend that you consider doing to help avoid other issues that can come from not replacing your tooth. The benefits of having your tooth replaced far outweigh the downsides and the financial investment. There are plenty of ways you can replace a missing tooth, or teeth, that can last a very long time. ?Hopefully this blog gave you a little more insight and education as to what can happen if you don’t replace your missing tooth (or teeth). ?