Reason for Lost Teeth
Many people make the assumption that tooth loss is from
decay. But the main reason is gum disease. The symptoms can
be painless until the infection reaches a severe level.
Signs may be bleeding gums during flossing or brushing and
loose or shifting teeth. If infected gums are treated in the
early stages, nonsurgical methods can be used.
Gum Disease is Linked to Other
The American Dental Association has estimated that 80% of
the American population has gum (periodontal) disease. At
such a level, most dentists consider it to be an epidemic.
This epidemic has not received the attention that other
serious health problems have, as it is not considered life-
threatening. Now, recent medical research has changed all
that – a link between heart disease, stroke, and gum disease
has been made!
The bacteria that infect the gums travels throughout the
bloodstream and body and can have an effect on all organs,
especially the heart. A report from the American Academy of
Periodontology states: “studies found periodontal infection
may contribute to the development of heart disease, increase
the risk of premature, underweight births, and pose a
serious threat to people whose health is already compromised
due to diabetes and respiratory diseases.”
News to Stop Gum Disease
Early detection and treatments will control the problem
before it reaches an advanced stage and requires surgery.
Although surgery is successful in halting the condition,
nonsurgical procedures and better dental hygiene can also
reverse the condition and restore gums to good health. Most
dental insurances usually cover both procedures.
The Problem with Missing Teeth
Whether a tooth is lost from injury, decay, or gum disease,
it will lead to other problems if not replaced with an
implant. A missing tooth lessens the amount of nutrients you
absorb from your food. Chewing may become difficult, so
easier-to-eat softer foods are selected, which can cause
weight gain. Eventually, the shape of your face will change
to a “sunken” look and you will appear older than you are.
You may not speak as clearly as with a full set of teeth.
But today, implants are the solution to the problem. They
are used to replace one or more missing teeth and they look
and function just like a natural tooth.
Timothy P. Thomas, DDS, PC
37799 Professional Center Drive, Suite 101
Livonia, MI 48154
Phone: (734) 464-2664