If you’re missing a tooth, you aren’t alone. At least 120 million people in the United States are missing at least one tooth.
Your teeth are meant to last a lifetime, but injury, decay, gum disease, or other illnesses can cause you to lose one or more of your teeth. When a tooth is missing, it threatens the health and structure of your mouth. Teeth surrounding the space shift and become more vulnerable to gum problems and decay.
Plus, a missing tooth can leave a space when you smile, making you feel self-conscious. Over time, your jaw’s shape may shift and, depending where your missing tooth is located, you may experience changes in speech and your ability to chew.
At Silicon Valley Smile Solution in San Jose, California, implant specialist Amir HagShenas, DDS welcomes patients with missing teeth to come in and explore their restoration options. If you’re missing a tooth, here are some of your options to bring back a complete and healthy smile.
Implants are a sturdy, safe, and natural-looking and feeling replacement for missing teeth. They consist of a titanium post surgically placed into your jawbone to replicate the absent tooth root. On top of this post, we place a strong dental crown that matches the shape and coloration of your natural teeth.
The post provides the same support as your natural tooth root, so it stimulates bone retention in your jaw and feels strong when you chew. The crown fills in the space between your remaining teeth to prevent shifting, preserve your ability to speak and chew, and keep your smile complete.
Though implants are probably the most effective solution for a missing tooth, not everyone is a candidate. You must be in good overall health and not experiencing gum disease or major bone loss in the jaw. If you don’t have enough natural bone, you may be eligible for bone grafting to create the support for your implant.
You care for an implant like you do your natural teeth, but need to commit to a regular hygiene routine that includes twice daily brushing, flossing, and routine professional cleanings.
Implants are also available as part of full mouth construction. We can replace more than one missing tooth and use them to support a full arch of teeth.
Partial dentures are a removable appliance that consist of a replacement tooth (or teeth) affixed to a gum-colored base. The denture is customized to fit your mouth. The gum-like base is the same color as your natural gums and the tooth the shade of your natural teeth.
A partial denture must be removed for cleaning and for eating certain foods. It can look quite natural as your existing teeth stabilize and hold the base in place.
A denture does solve the cosmetic issues of a missing tooth, but it will not replicate the tooth root and prevent bone degradation over time. Some people need a period of adjustment to get used to the feel of the dentures and may experience subtle changes in speech.
If you’re missing a tooth, don’t settle for a gapless smile. Contact us at Silicon Valley Smile Solution to learn about the options that are best for you. Call today, or use the online booking agent to make your appointment.