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Is Replacing a Missing Back Tooth Worth It? A Dentist Explains Why.

August 14, 2022

Filed under: Uncategorized — dentalcenterofmidlothian @ 9:58 pm
Person with a missing back tooth receiving an oral exam

Did you know that dental implants were originally invented to replace molars? This is because these back teeth were typically the first to require removal as a result of tooth decay and general wear and tear. Today, many people assume that if their back teeth are lost, they don’t need to replace them because they don’t make up their visible smile. However, the reality is a bit more complicated. If you have a missing back tooth, here’s why it’s worth getting it replaced!

Protect Your Bone Health

Teeth do far more than simply make up your smile. Underneath the gum tissue, the tooth’s root stimulates your jawbone to ensure it remains strong and durable. When a tooth is lost, the root is lost as well. Until a dental implant is placed, the bone tissue will continue to atrophy (or break down), causing changes in the shape of your jaw.

Additionally, any remaining teeth sitting adjacent to the gap in your smile will be at greater risk of being lost as well. After jawbone deterioration begins, a domino effect occurs that makes nearby bone more vulnerable to damage. This means replacing missing teeth with dental implants not only help you rebuild your smile, but also keep the one you already have.

Eating Your Favorite Foods is Easier

While your back tooth may not be noticeable to those around you most of the time, you’ll certainly be the one to notice it when you realize chewing your favorite foods is not as easy as it used to be. This is because the molars are largely responsible for breaking down food, making it easier for the body to digest them. If you happen to enjoy foods that require a lot of chewing, including thick cuts of meat, nuts, apples, or similar options, replacing teeth is an absolute necessity.

Prevent Misalignment

The more gaps you have in your smile, the more prone your teeth are to a common side effect of tooth loss known as “dental drift.” This phenomenon is the mouth’s natural response to missing teeth and occurs as a way to compensate for the extra space. Teeth will begin to slowly shift into the newly created gaps in an attempt to make the smile even again. However, this only leads to dramatic misalignment. This can put you at greater risk of developing jaw problems later in life, such as TMJ disorder.

Just because no one will notice your back tooth is missing doesn’t mean a dental implant isn’t worth it to make your smile complete again! After all, the benefits are not solely about esthetics.

About the Author

Dr. Phillip Johnson holds the expertise necessary to keep the entire dental implant procedure in-house for your convenience. He’s prepared to explain the entire treatment process to you in great detail, partner you with his knowledgeable team members to discuss financing options, and can even recommend sedation therapy if necessary. To schedule an appointment, you can contact him through his website.

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