- Missing teeth can have a major impact on more than just your smile
- How to replace missing teeth (5 best missing teeth solutions)
- Tips for choosing a cosmetic dentist for missing teeth
A missing tooth affects your smile appearance, confidence, speech, ability to chew food, and jawbone integrity. The good news is that plenty of missing teeth solutions are available to restore your fantastic smile. You get the chance to improve your oral health, confidence, and overall quality of life.
Missing teeth are a common problem that affects many people in the United States, so you are not alone. According to the American College of Prosthodontists (ACP), about 120 million Americans are missing at least one tooth, and over 36 million Americans don’t have any teeth at all. These figures are likely to increase in the next 20 years.
The causes of teeth or tooth loss range from severe injuries to poor dental hygiene and affect people of all ages. These causes include gum infections, periodontal diseases, genetic conditions, tooth cracks, abscesses, and chips. The problem may result from severe tooth decay, oral cancer, tooth wear, and poor nutrition. This guide will explore various solutions for missing teeth to help you smile again and explain what to expect from a professional dentist.
The Impact of Missing Teeth
A missing tooth can sometimes have little to no impact, depending on its location. If you have a missing tooth in the side or back of your mouth, no one is likely to realize a gap in your mouth. That’s quite different if one or more of your front teeth are missing.
Your teeth are meant to work together, so missing one or several of them not only negatively affects your smile but also impacts your speech, ability to eat, and confidence and causes other oral problems over time.
If you find it uncomfortable or difficult to chew food, you’re likely to eat at a slower pace. You’re also likely to eat only on one side of your mouth, affecting your facial and jaw muscles.
Missing several teeth alters the shape of your face as it forces your mouth to shift. Your bite may change to compensate or make up for lost teeth. The remaining teeth may shift and move even further, given the extra room in your mouth. This leads to other problems like tooth grinding, difficulty chewing, and tooth sensitivity.
How to Replace Missing Teeth (5 Best Missing Teeth Solutions)
Various treatment options are available no matter the cause of your missing teeth. You can replace a lost tooth or adjust your mouth’s overall appearance. Here are the common missing teeth solutions to consider:
Dental implants are a reliable and effective solution for replacing single or multiple missing teeth in various parts of your mouth. They look like natural teeth to blend in with the existing ones.
The treatment involves surgically inserting a titanium metal screw or post into your jawbone on the upper or lower jaw. These screws replace your tooth’s root and offer a surface to mount false or artificial teeth. They allow the artificial teeth to stay in position for a long time as they provide a permanent base.
It takes a few months for your dental implants to heal after installation, and during this time, the implant(s) becomes securely attached to your jawbone. Your dentist then places and secures a dental crown to give you permanent, lifelong benefits.
An implant-supported bridge is a suitable and effective option for replacing several missing teeth in a row. The treatment starts with a surgical implant, where your dentist installs small titanium posts at two ends of your jaw. These ends support and keep the middle teeth in place without needing screwing to replace every missing tooth.
The procedure occurs around 4–6 months after the surgical implant. It involves mounting artificial teeth to replace the missing tooth along your jaw. Your body supplies nutrients to the jaw area to firmly secure the new teeth.
Implant-supported bridges don’t depend on your existing teeth for support, so there’s no removal of healthy tissue. They are stable, look natural, and stay in place for a long time to restore your smile, speech, and ability to chew properly.
A tooth-supported dental bridge relies on your existing teeth to facilitate the placement of new teeth. It works best if one or several teeth are missing in the same area. Your doctor places a crown on the teeth adjacent to the missing ones and uses dental cement to bond the teeth in place.
Tooth-supported bridges give you the realistic feel and look of a dental implant. They enhance the appearance of your natural teeth on each side of your mouth. The procedure is simple as it doesn’t involve inserting two or more implants into your jaw. No surgery is needed, so it is less invasive and cheaper than dental implants.
Removal of Partial Dentures
Consider getting a removable partial denture if you want to replace several teeth in a small section. This involves attaching replacement teeth to a natural, removable pink base that acts as your gums. Your existing teeth stabilize the base and keep it in position. Some dentures feature a clasp that adjoins the artificial teeth to your natural teeth.
You can easily remove, replace, or repair the dentures as you desire. The removable partial dentures’ pink base matches the color of your gum and teeth to provide a natural look and feel. They are among the most affordable tooth replacement options as their application is simple.
Removable Complete Dentures
A complete denture is a suitable option for replacing all teeth in the lower or upper of your mouth. They are a prosthesis with replacement teeth that a dentist mounts on a pink, gum-colored base that fits your existing gums.
Removable complete dentures are either immediate or conventional. Immediate dentures are prosthesis devices made in advance, and your dentist places them right after removing the teeth. They boost your smile instantly since you don’t have to wait for your gums and jaw bones to heal.
Conventional dentures are often ready for replacement after teeth removal and healing of your gum tissue. They provide better results than immediate dentures as they don’t need regular adjustments for proper fitting. The placement occurs about 2–3 months after teeth removal.
There are plenty of excellent options to remedy tooth loss to an injury, tooth decay, genetics, or gum disease. The above missing teeth solutions have unique pros, including enhancing your smile, confidence, and function. Consult an experienced dentist to determine which tooth loss treatment option is best for you.
Tips for Choosing a Cosmetic Dentist for Missing Teeth
A cosmetic dentist focuses on fixing your dental issues like missing teeth and improving tooth appearance and function. Choosing a professional cosmetic dentist with the right skills to meet your needs is advisable. Below are a few tips for selecting the best dentist for your missing teeth solutions:
- Check for your dentist’s credentials and qualifications to assess their expertise
- Research their past and current patients to see how well they treated them
- Read through honest reviews and testimonials about dentists to understand how others think of them
- Ask for pictures of previous patients before and after to see their smile-designing experience
- Assess the missing teeth solutions offered to find a perfect fit for your needs
Working with a professional cosmetic dentist is the best way to restore your smile and confidence. They have vast experience in providing effective treatments to remedy tooth loss issues. Use the above tips to choose an accredited dentist for the best results.
Schedule an Appointment Today
Losing one or several of your teeth alters your smile, teeth alignment, ability to eat, and confidence. The good news is that there are various treatment solutions to remedy your tooth loss problem. Some of the best tooth loss treatment options to consider are dental implants, dentures, and fixed bridges.
The professionals at The Dental Team are ready to help if you’re looking to replace one or several teeth in Toronto. We offer reliable and varied missing teeth solutions to revive your beautiful smile, confidence, and ability to chew food normally. Our multiple dental clinics are available throughout Greater Toronto for easy access. Contact us today to schedule an appointment to talk to a dentist and learn how we help you.