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How Poor Oral Health Can Lead to Tooth Loss

By Steven Kail on April 25, 2016


Gum recession around a toothGood dental healthy is rooted in healthy teeth and gums. These are the basics that we stress at Premier Dental Center, and patients in and around the Jackson area can count on us for preventative care as well as advanced restorative dentistry, always with a focus on overall health and wellness.

A number of patients have asked us how poor dental hygiene can lead to tooth loss. We'd like to cover the basics of this topic right now.

Dental Hygiene Is Crucial for Lasting Wellness

Proper oral hygiene is the best way to have a smile that lasts a lifetime. It sounds simple, but sometimes it's easier said than done. People sometimes lapse on their dental health habits, which leads to major issues with dental health and wellness. When your oral health is bad, tooth loss is far more likely, resulting in serious dental wellness issues.

Tooth Decay and Missing Teeth

One of the most common dental problems that can lead to tooth loss is tooth decay. Tooth decay occurs when oral bacteria feeds on food particles caught between the teeth. This creates plaque, a sticky substance that the bacteria uses to cling to the teeth. The oral bacteria and plaque can begin to damage the tooth structure, weakening your teeth and causing cavities. At more serious levels of tooth decay, you can potentially lose a tooth.

Gum Disease and Missing Teeth

Gum disease refers to the bacterial infection of the gum tissue that is caused by the bacteria that naturally occurs in the mouth. (This is the same bacteria that causes tooth decay and bad breath.)

There are three stages of gum disease:

  • Gingivitis
  • Periodontitis
  • Advanced periodontitis

Early stages of gum disease can lead to bleeding gums and irritated gums, while later stages of gum disease can result in gum recession, loose teeth, and even tooth loss.

Bad Dental Habits Can Result in Tooth Loss

In addition to tooth decay and gum disease, bad dental habits can contribute to the loss of teeth. This covers a broad range of conditions that may include excessive snacking on sugary foods, excessive soda consumption, smoking, use off smokeless tobacco, and biting your fingernails. If bad habits go unchecked, it can result in tooth damage, gum damage, and even tooth loss.

Root Canal Infections and Missing Teeth

Within each tooth is a small cluster of soft tissue known as dental pulp, which is a combination of nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. The dental pulp is essential for the initial formation of a tooth. A root canal infection occurs when oral bacteria manages to get inside of the tooth and affects the dental pulp in the process. When a tooth is severely infected, it may need to be extracted to alleviate pain and prevent further dental problems.

Tips for Good Oral Hygiene

The best way to maintain good oral hygiene is to follow these simple tips:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day (ideally you should brush after every meal)
  • Floss your teeth at least once a night (ideally you should floss after every meal)
  • Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet
  • Avoid tobacco products of all kinds
  • Visit your dentist twice a year for routine checkups

Schedule a Consultation at Premier Dental Center

For more information about good dental care and how to have a healthy and beautiful smile, be sure to contact our advanced cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. The team at Premier Dental Center look forward to your visit and helping you have the best smile possible.

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