The Unsettling Effect of Tooth Loss

Many patients underestimate the implications and consequences associated with missing teeth. Upon closer examination, you will find the effects to be far more serious than many are aware of.

dental implantsTooth loss is physical, emotional and psychosocial all at once. Patients undergo a change that leaves a holistic effect in their appearance, speech, functioning, comfort and health.

Find out how tooth loss can bring about these effects.

The Facial Collapse: effect of non-stimulation

Tooth loss is not about the tooth so much as it is about the bones.

The facial bones are important in the configuration of the face. They are responsible for supporting the nose, cheek, lips and skin, and require continuous stimulation to maintain their shape, volume and density.

This stimulation can be likened to how exercise keeps the bones in your body active and healthy.

The bone supporting the teeth (alveolar) requires this stimulation from the teeth themselves. The teeth make contact with these bones every day through the periodontal ligament, “exercising” the bone and stimulating it to reconstruct continually.

When a tooth is lost, these bones lose width over time, brought about by lack of stimulation.

Within the first year of tooth loss, the bone’s width decreases by 25% and up to 4 millimetres in height in the subsequent years, creating a domino effect. As it loses width, it loses height. As it reduces in height, it loses width as a result– and the cycle continues.

At some point, it will have an effect of the gum tissues, whose deterioration will cause a change in speech and everyday functioning, such as biting and chewing.

If not addressed on time, this can also cause the basal bone (bone at the base of the alveolar) to recede or resorb. The chin will tilt forwards and upwards, and the cheeks will hollow out.

Thus, the patient experiences what is called the facial collapse, which causes premature aging.

Dental implant: restoring bone vitality

Dental implants are innovative treatments that effectively counter the effects of tooth loss. Unlike other tooth replacement solutions, they promote healthy bone growth by stimulating bone remodelling and integrating with the bone. In effect, they restore the patient’s appearance, functioning and speech.

Find out if you qualify for this treatment and contact Harley Street Dental Clinic for an assessment today.