Missing teeth become a huge problem for a person who doesn’t rush to replace them with a replacement. Many people believe that one missing tooth is not a big deal and nothing changes in your life without it. They don’t even imagine how their life will start changing and how many discomforts will appear.
A lost tooth isn’t just an unattractive gap in your mouth, it’s a source of problems for the entire body. Teeth start gradually moving in order to close the gap and this badly affects the bite. First, you start feeling uncomfortable while chewing and even talking. Then you notice problems with your stomach because you aren’t able to process your food properly anymore.
The disproportion in your mouth causes an improper distribution of strain on your jaws. This results in headaches, jaw crepitation, and TMJ issues. Your face also changes. The change in your bite affects your facial features and muscles. This makes you look older and wrinkles and skin folds will appear related to your new abnormal occlusion.
The Sooner, the Better
To avoid all this, you need to replace a missing tooth immediately. Prosthesis won’t let your occlusion deform and will keep all the teeth in their places. There are different options for restoration but the best one is a dental implant. It’s a complete replacement for a natural tooth. This option to restore your teeth is expensive, but it can become way more expensive if you waste time to do it. That’s because you may need an additional bone grafting procedure if you wait a long time to get your dental implant.
As you chew without a tooth, the bone tissue in the place of the missing tooth doesn’t receive the necessary blood flow and strain to keep functioning as it’s supposed to. It starts reducing in volume. This can make a problem in installing a dental implant.
A bone graft is an artificial tissue that will form the base for your future tooth. It turns into your own bone tissue over time, so you will have to wait for it to happen before you can have your new tooth. This is why you shouldn’t wait long before replacing a missing tooth if you don’t want to wait longer afterward. Besides, your occlusion will become worse and worse. In the worst case, you may need to wear braces to free the space for a dental implant in your mouth.
How Long Can I Go Without a Tooth to Preserve the Bone?
The progression speed of bone loss varies among people. In some people, several months are enough to launch the irreversible changes. Others can go without a tooth for years and nothing may change. You never know how lucky you are, so it’s better to not try your luck.
Dental implant specialists offer a procedure that enables installing an implant right after tooth extraction. But there are some cases when it’s impossible due to the health conditions of the patient or some other reasons. What to do in such cases?
When you get a tooth extracted, you can go without a replacement for up to six months. It’s better to make an appointment to evaluate the amount of bone loss even earlier, to avoid unnecessary risks. Make an appointment with a dental implant specialist in 2-3 months after the extraction to be absolutely sure you won’t need bone grafting for your new teeth.