What Causes Tooth Loss?
Tooth loss often happens as the result of poor dental hygiene and lack of routine dental care. However, some medical conditions, dietary choices, and medications lead to tooth loss too. The common factors that lead to tooth loss include:
- Gum disease
- Tooth decay
Tooth loss is often preventable with routine cleanings and daily brushing and flossing. You can also minimize your risk of losing teeth if you quit smoking and avoid sugary food and drinks.
What Options Do I Have to Replace Missing Teeth?
Missing teeth can make you self-conscious about your appearance and interfere with your chewing and speaking. Many people want to replace missing teeth as soon as possible. Today, there are more options than ever to fill in those gaps, such as:
- Dental Implants: titanium root surgically attached to the jawbone
- Bridges: replacement teeth connected together and then attached to surrounding teeth, like multiple crowns
- Dentures: full or partial set of replacement teeth
How Do Bridges and Crowns Work?
A bridge is a like a set of multiple crowns, connected together and then attached to your regular teeth. Your dentist prepares your abutment teeth for crowns by removing some of the enamel. He then takes impressions of your teeth to send to the lab where they create your bridge.
At your next appointment, your dentist checks the fit of the bridge and crowns before cementing the bridge in place. By taking the place of missing teeth, the bridge prevents your other teeth from shifting out of place. It also redistributes the pressure of biting so your natural teeth don’t take all the force.
How Do I Take Care of a Bridge?
It’s important to keep up with your brushing and flossing habits and schedule routine exams and cleanings to maintain the integrity of the teeth surrounding the bridge. Fixed bridges don’t require any out-of-the-ordinary care. Proper oral hygiene may prolong the life of your bridge.
To discuss your restorative options for missing teeth, call or click to make an appointment at one of the Spokane, Washington, locations.