Statistics show that 69% of American adults ages 35 – 44 have lost at least one natural tooth due to an accident, periodontal (gum) disease, or tooth decay. For those age 74 and over, 26% have lost ALL of their natural teeth.
If you are in the 35+ age group and are missing one or more natural teeth, statistics also show that the next tooth (or teeth) most likely to be lost will be those adjacent to the areas where tooth loss has occurred.
You CAN halt continued tooth loss and avoid becoming one of the toothless 26% statistic as you grow older. How? Follow these guidelines and enjoy a healthy, confident smile as you age …
1. Replace missing teeth with dental implants to keep those adjacent (beside and above or below) in proper position. Dental implants do not rely on neighboring teeth as supports (as required by crown-&-bridge combinations) so other natural teeth are never compromised. And because they are anchored by the jaw bone, just as natural tooth roots, they recreate the stability and dependability of natural teeth.
2. Be committed to your at-home oral health care regimen. Brush a minimum of twice per day and floss your teeth daily. Use an oral rinse and tongue scraper to help rid excess bacteria from the mouth. Brush your tongue with your toothbrush if you don’t have a tongue scraper.
3. Keep your six-month check-ups and cleaning appointments. Getting your teeth professionally cleaned twice a year gives you a leg up on maintaining healthy teeth and gums at home. A hygienist can remove plaque build-up that you cannot, and also point out vulnerable areas to pay special attention to during your home care.
4. If you have problems that are putting your oral health at risk, such as tooth grinding or clenching at night or waking up with sore jaw joints with frequent headaches, acknowledge that you need treatment and get it. These problems don’t go away on their own and will gradually worsen without treatment. The sooner you resolve them, the less involved treatment will be (minimizing treatment time and expense).
Living life with dentures in your mouth is a difficult way to eat, laugh and feel confident with others. Our goal is to help you avoid problems and enjoy a healthy, confident smile for a lifetime. Keeping your natural teeth is the ideal way to smile, at any age! For those who have lost teeth, we are fortunate to live during a time that offers terrific dental options.
Don’t have a personal plan for a lifetime smile? Call (586) 739-2155 to schedule a comprehensive exam. This will allow me to provide you with a treatment plan that meets your long-term preferences and goals.