Should I replace that missing tooth?
Many people often wonder what they should do about missing teeth. Should you get a bridge, a denture (flipper), a dental implant, or how about nothing at all. The answer is simple. The only teeth we typically do not replace if they are lost are our wisdom teeth.
That is because most people lose their wisdom teeth because they simply don’t have enough room in their mouths for them. Otherwise, you should seriously consider replacing all other missing teeth. Why? Because teeth have two purposes: to grind food or to incise or bite into food. Our front teeth are used to bite into food while our back teeth (up to our second molars) are used to chew food.
If you begin to lose back teeth, you still need to chew your food. But now you are missing the big, strong back molars or premolars, which are designed to chew and take the heavy load of chewing your food. If you don’t have these strong, big, back molars, the food begins to transfer to the teeth closer to the front of the mouth. The teeth in the back of the mouth are large and are designed to take the chewing load. Think of it as a nutcracker. You always place the walnut as close to the narrow portion of the nutcracker as possible to crack the nut. The mouth is exactly the same. The back of the mouth is the narrow portion of the nutcracker.
If you lose back teeth, the food must now be moved by your tongue to the front teeth. However, the front teeth are not designed to chew but only to bite into food. As such, with too much load or pressure from chewing, they can crack. Why? Because they are smaller and narrower and can’t tolerate the load of chewing. So if you begin to lose your back teeth, eventually you may crack and split your front teeth from overload.
Also, when you lose teeth anywhere in the mouth, the teeth begin to shift positions to fill in the gaps. If you are happy with the way your teeth appear because you were born with nice teeth or had expensive orthodontics when you were younger, you could now experience a shift of these nice teeth and you could lose that beautiful smile. Large gaps could appear or your teeth could begin to overlap and you will not be happy with the results.
Comments are closed.