Missing Teeth? Get a Smile Makeover to Prevent Your Face from Changing

Missing teeth - smile makeoverLosing a tooth as an adult can be horrifying. Having a hole in your smile is not exactly a confidence-booster. And there’s more bad news: A missing tooth will change the shape of your face. For people who are missing more than one tooth, the alteration to your appearance can be drastic, making you look far older than you actually are.

Missing teeth may occur because of an accident, a sports injury, gum disease, or as a side effect of aging. While replacing missing front teeth may seem more urgent than tending to any other absent teeth, neglecting or delaying restoration of any of your teeth, molars included, is unwise.

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Three Ways to Replace Missing Teeth

Your teeth do more than just chew your food and help you speak. Your teeth have the important role of helping your face maintain its shape and length. Over time, a person who is missing a great number of teeth can develop a shriveled or compressed appearance. Why? Their jawbone is gradually getting smaller. Missing molars are responsible for aligning your jaw and retaining the shape of your jawline. And when front teeth are absent, facial features can being to shift or sag because the face muscles aren’t properly supported.

Don’t allow your oral health problems to progress to this level. Restorative dentistry solutions are readily available:

  • Porcelain fixed dental bridges: The prosthetic known as a porcelain fixed dental bridge can close a gap by adding a new porcelain tooth (or teeth) with hidden clasps to secure them to the crowned abutment teeth on either side. Bridges can’t be removed, and they can last for decades with proper care.
  • Dentures: When you are missing a great number of teeth from either your upper or lower jaw, dentures can be used to replace all of them. A partial denture is also an option when you need to replace a few missing teeth. Modern dentures have come a long way and are far more comfortable and easier to maintain so there’s no need to fear the stigma of being a denture-wearer. These false teeth are made of porcelain and are held in place by denture adhesive, attached to existing teeth with clasps, or attached to dental implants.
  • Dental implants: While dental bridges and dentures are excellent methods of filling the spaces left by missing teeth, one of the most popular and effective ways to replace missing teeth is with dental implants. Once the implants are in place, there will be no fear of them slipping out of place. Dental implants are completely secure, while functioning and looking just like natural teeth. In other words, dental implants are a permanent alternative to dentures that require zero special maintenance other than regular dental care. Above all, dental implants preserve and stimulate the jaw bone, working as a substitute for the original roots of your teeth and restoring the foundation of your smile.

Your jaw bone is stimulated by the roots of your teeth every time you chew, so when there are gaps in your smile this contributes to further bone loss and impacts how well your teeth function and, of course, how you look. And even though you might be missing teeth, that doesn’t make you immune to gum disease. In fact, periodontal disease is an even greater risk because the pocket where your tooth once lived will be vulnerable to plaque and bacteria.

Ultimately, you know that you don’t want to live with missing teeth, and you certainly don’t have to when there are incredibly effective and life-changing solutions available. Contact Dr. Michael J. Wei at Manhattan Cosmetic Dentist to discuss restorative dentistry solutions for replacing missing teeth and giving you an amazing smile makeover.