When you look good, you feel good. A missing tooth can have a negative impact on your appearance and, subsequently, your confidence. If you’ve lost a tooth, you might be wondering what you should do next. You might have questions about replacement options or about what happens if you don’t replace the missing tooth. If so, you’re in good company. Did you know that more than 156 million Americans are missing at least one tooth? Over the years, we’ve answered hundreds of questions about tooth loss from concerned patients. Below you’ll find more information about what happens if you don’t replace a missing tooth.
Your Teeth Will Move
If you fail to replace a missing tooth, the teeth around the gap will begin to move, resulting in changes in your smile. Gaps often develop, and teeth often become crooked if you don’t replace the missing tooth with a dental implant, denture, or bridge. This movement can affect the health of your other teeth and ultimately lead to the loss of your remaining teeth. If you alter the way that you chew to compensate for the lost tooth, you could end up damaging your bite, which, can lead to the need for further treatment.
Missing teeth have an impact on how well your bite works. Teeth are designed to work in pairs. Pressure is exerted from the top row and bottom row of your teeth when you chew. A missing tooth alters the alignment of your bite, decreasing your ability to chew efficiently. Some people even develop digestive issues after losing a tooth due to increased difficulty chewing.
The Alignment of Your Bite Will Change
If you don’t replace a missing tooth, the way your bite comes together will change. Your upper and lower teeth will start to come together differently. Misalignments often lead to other physical problems such as headaches and jaw tension. Your dentist can often prevent these issues from developing by placing a dental implant, bridge, or denture.
Reduced Confidence in Your Appearance
Many patients find that having missing teeth adversely impacts their self-confidence and feelings about their overall appearance. Many patients report feeling self-conscious when smiling, talking, or eating in public when missing teeth. Replacing missing teeth can play an important role in reducing negative impacts on self-confidence.
If you’re ready to get your smile back, contact us today to schedule a dental implant!