Portrait of smiling older woman

Have you ever known someone who has lost their teeth and noticed how their face seems to be caved in? They may have deep wrinkles around their lips, drool pockets in the corners of their smile, or their nose and chin are very close to each other?  This is because, not only are they missing their teeth, but the teeth roots are gone as well.  Your natural teeth have long roots that anchor your teeth into your jaw. Your teeth roots, as you chew, have the job to stimulate and maintain your jaw bone. Your teeth also are the “anchor” or “foundation of your face and help to maintain jaw and facial structure.” 

How Do Dental Implants Help If You Have Missing Teeth?

Dental Implants are “substitute” tooth roots that function the same way your natural teeth roods do. When teeth are lost, dental implants serve as a replacement anchor and the new foundation which supports your jaw bone and facial structure.  In other words, dental implants maintain and retain the shape of your face and smile.  

Many Beverly Hills Patients Do Not Know Each Tooth Has a Job. Did You?

The answer is that yes, they do. Some teeth are meant for biting and some teeth are for chewing, and each tooth helps to maintain the health and stability of the other teeth in their place.  When teeth are lost, and not replaced with dental implants, the jaw bone will resorb or melt away, causing facial collapse and possible additional tooth loss. As we discussed, dental implants help to stimulate and preserve the jaw bone. Another issue that may occur with tooth loss is that the remaining teeth have to perform the “job” that the lost teeth were doing.  Having missing teeth puts a lot of undue forces and stress on the remaining teeth and this can lead to tooth loss due to fracturing, inflammation on the inside of the tooth, and other consequences leading to possible additional procedures to try to save the remaining teeth.

What are the Consequences Beverly Hills Patients Face With Missing Teeth?

Most people do not realize that when they lose a tooth or teeth, they are then forced to use their remaining teeth to perform the job of their missing teeth. By using biting or cutting teeth, located in the front of the mouth, to perform the job of chewing and grinding teeth, located in the back of the mouth or the other way around, you jeopardize the health and longevity of the remaining teeth. Without replacing missing teeth with dental implants, you can become trapped in a cycle of bone and tooth loss leading to structural changes in the face and smile. In addition, to leaving areas of missing teeth untreated with dental implants, the remaining teeth may shift into the space or drop down into the empty space when lower teeth are lost.  This can lead to TMJ (temporal mandibular joint) pain and or muscle spasm in the jaw or face. TMJ issues are due to the inflammation of the joint between your upper and lower jaw. When back teeth are lost and not replaced with dental implants, the front teeth can splay forward, profoundly changing the smile and shape of the face. 

What Should Beverly Hills Patients Do About Missing Teeth?

All of this destruction of bone and facial collapse can be easily prevented by consulting with your general dentist and a highly trained surgical dental implant specialist who is knowledgeable in the placement of dental implants. By working with experienced dental professionals, as a team, these highly trained dental professionals will help you restore and maintain your dental health and keep you smiling.

Contact our Beverly Hills office for more information or read our dental implant FAQs to learn more.