How Missing Teeth Change Your Life
Your teeth are important. They perform multiple crucial functions, such as eating and speaking. They give you a beautiful smile and are an essential part of your jawbone health. Chances are that you don’t often think about them, even if you lose a few. Ignoring missing teeth can be quite detrimental. At Dallas Prosthodontics, we understand the repercussions of not addressing missing teeth and offer many solutions to help you replace them.
Consequences of Missing Teeth
Poor HealthWhen you lose your teeth, eating normally becomes difficult. You can no longer chew your food properly. Some foods get stuck in the gaps, while other foods become impossible to eat. Chewing is the first step in digestion, helping to break down what you eat into smaller pieces, making it easier for the body to absorb nutrients. When foods are not broken down the way they should be, digestion is affected. Ultimately, it can lead to malnutrition due to improper nutrient absorption.
Hard to CommunicateYou don’t often connect your teeth with speaking. However, they play an important role in this function. Your teeth control air flow and certain sounds require your tongue to tap against them. Without your teeth, air flows freely often resulting in a lisp. The more teeth that are missing, the harder speaking becomes and the more difficult it becomes for others to understand you.
Self-ConsciousnessYour smile is often the very first thing that people notice about you. When you are missing your teeth, your smile is incomplete and imperfect. This can often lead others to get a less than impressed first impression of you. The efforts to hide your smile (either by smiling with your lips closed or disguising your mouth with your hand) can have this same effect.
Altered Facial StructureBelieve it or not, your teeth play a crucial role in maintaining the health and strength of your jaw. Every time you chew, the roots of your teeth stimulate your jawbone, which sends a message to your body that nutrients are needed. In response, essential vitamins and minerals are sent through the bloodstream to the jaw. When you lose your teeth, those messages are no longer sent. Your body thinks these nutrients are no longer needed and therefore sends them elsewhere. As a result, your jawbone begins to weaken and slowly changes shape. Not only does this alter the structure of your face, giving you a more aged appearance, it also causes your remaining teeth to shift from their original positions. In turn, this affects your bite, which can then lead to other serious oral health issues, including uneven wear on healthy teeth and trouble with your temporomandibular joint.
What Can You Do?Fortunately, missing teeth can be replaced, restoring not only the function of your teeth but the appearance of your smile. At Dallas Prosthodontics, we have several options for you to choose from, including bridges, dentures (both partial and full) and dental implants. All of these options are meant to give you back your life.