Save Your Teeth and Appear More Youthful!
At Marion Smile Center, we’ve heard many new patients say, “I have ‘bad teeth.’ I just want them all pulled and to get dentures or implants. It will just be easier to maintain.” You can trust that Dr. Mark Marion is extremely passionate about saving one’s natural teeth, if at all possible.
As a Dental Assistant at Marion Smile Center, I have personally witnessed patients asking Dr. Marion to pull teeth and he politely refused to do so because he knew that the teeth were savable with a little TLC. Removing the teeth would not only result in gaps, affecting patients’ chewing and speaking, but also cause loss of bone in their jaw resulting in an aging affect of the face.
What Causes Missing Teeth?
In the US alone, more than 36 million Americans have no teeth at all, while 120 million are missing at least 1 tooth. In some cases, illnesses such as cancer, injuries to the mouth, or grinding which wears down and loosens your teeth, can be the culprit for losing teeth. However, most teeth that fall out or have to be pulled are typically from cavities and gum disease, which can both be treated or maintained with proper dental care in their early stages.
Gum disease (or periodontal disease) is the #1 leading cause for missing teeth. Not only does this disease cause the bacteria around your natural teeth to lose bone around them, which can lead to your teeth getting loose and eventually falling out – but it can also cause an implant to get infected or loosen and fall out. Dr. Mark Marion, along with his highly skilled dental hygienists, have a top notch program for treating and maintaining gum disease that have gotten thousands of patients back on track with their dental health.
Issues with Missing Teeth
Missing teeth can cause a handful of other issues and concerns. If you don’t get an implant, bridge, or partial denture where the tooth once was, it will be harder to chew, which will put more stress on the surrounding teeth. It can also cause the opposing tooth to shift or the adjacent teeth to tilt inward into the empty spot.
Tooth loss equals bone loss. When one loses a tooth, they will lose bone structure in their jaw, which will inevitably change the shape of their face over time. Most people do not link the loss of teeth with the aging we see in the mirror.
Have you noticed older people who have missing teeth and their face gets a scrunched look? Think of a grandparent without their dentures in. Without the denture, the mouth collapses onto itself. The lower portion of the face shrinks. That’s because the teeth act like trees with roots into the soil (or gums). Once the tooth and its roots are pulled from the gums, the foundation that holds your lips and skin taunt around your mouth no longer exist. Hence, scrunch mouth!
In order to help preserve the bone and prevent scrunch mouth from aging your appearance, Dr. Marion in Zelienople recommends dental implants. Dental implants will actually cause new bone to grow around the implant itself. This additional bone growth helps create the structure in your jaw that holds your lips and skin tight around your mouth.
Most people tend to lose confidence and don’t like to smile as much when they don’t have all of their teeth. Missing teeth can also affect one’s speech. All of these issues together can affect one’s work performance and social life. Psychological problems can also occur.
Another thing to take into consideration when removing quite a few teeth and having to get denture or partial is eating. Not only will it be an adjustment eating with a foreign appliance in your mouth, but it will also affect how you smell and taste food since it can cover your upper palate. Lower dentures typically don’t suction as well because there’s not a large surface to create suction. You have to be careful with what and how you eat as well – things like lettuce can be difficult, nothing too sticky, and chew your food slowly and evenly on both sides. One also has to be patient with their new appliance, as there is an adjustment period.
Marion Smile Center Can Help!
If you’re feeling hopeless and want to get back on track with your dental health, please give Marion Smile Center a call at 724.452.4300 or click here to reserve a time. Dr. Mark Marion, ranked year after year by Pittsburgh Magazine as a top Cosmetic Dentist and his team would love to help you get the healthy smile of your dreams while doing everything they can to save your natural dentition. To learn more about restorative dentistry services our Zelienople dentist offers, click here. To learn more about how dental implants in Zelienople can help provide a more youthful appearance, click here.