We fit a dental implant and its corresponding ceramic crown to replace a lost tooth or molar. When extracted, the missing tooth leaves a space in the mouth which can have different consequences.
Reasons for losing a tooth
You can lose a tooth due to a traumatic shock, deep tooth decay down to the root or to a persistent gum infection which destroys the bone round the tooth, meaning that it loses the anchor it needs for mastication.
Until a few years ago, even if a tooth was moving, it was left until it fell out. Today we take action earlier to prevent the bone from deteriorating more than necessary, bearing in mind that its subsequent replacement with an implant is advisable. At our dental surgery we can advise you on the best solution, we are specialists in dental implants in San Sebastian.
Consequences of losing a tooth
- For proper mastication you need all of the teeth in your mouth. On extracting one or more teeth, the neighbouring teeth move in the attempt to close the resulting space. Spaces appear between the surrounding teeth, trapping food and increasing the possibility of tooth decay and gum infection.
- If nothing is done, the surrounding molars may eventually tilt, meaning that they receive the lateral force of mastication and are more likely to fall out. If two or more pieces are missing, some of the antagonist teeth can tilt forward to the extent of leaving the roots unprotected, also potentially leading to premature tooth loss.
- Masticatory effectiveness is lost, even if the patient gets used to it and it doesn’t really notice it. This can affect your digestion and the subsequent absorption of food.
- The smile aesthetic suffers. In the event of a front tooth, a black space appears given that the cavity of the mouth is dark. If it is a superior premolar, a rather frequent situation, the patient doesn’t see the space in the mirror because it is on the side; but it does spoil their smile.
For aesthetic reasons, a lost superior premolar must always be substituted. The loss of posterior molars, as well as having an important detrimental effect on mastication, can also affect the quality of your smile due to movement of the front teeth.
- Being unable to chew properly on one side of your mouth can affect the other side, causing overload and the appearance of more tooth decay and gum infection.
Ways of filling the space left by a tooth
A missing tooth or teeth can be replaced with a removable appliance, with a porcelain bridge between the tooth before and after the space, and by means of one or several implants.
Each type of dental prosthesis has its indications:
- The removable appliance must be taken out for washing and can move when masticating; however, it has the advantage of being cheaper, above all in the case of having to replace several teeth.
- A porcelain bridge is fixed in place, but it means that the teeth next to it must be filed to take it, and sometimes there is no rear tooth to support it. It is a good solution when there is not enough bone to fit an implant.
- The implant with its crown is the ideal solution, since no sculpting of the adjacent teeth is required; however, there must be sufficient bone and gum.
We must remember that prevention is the best option, and that the ideal situation is to avoid tooth loss.