Understanding Risk Factors for Tooth Loss
It’s important to keep all your permanent teeth. Without a complete smile, you risk gum recession, dietary restrictions, and further tooth loss. By identifying common contributors to tooth loss, you can protect your teeth. Certain factors can influence tooth loss, including:
Developing cavities can weaken your teeth and make you susceptible to tooth loss, especially if you allow the decay to grow. When deep decay compromises the tooth, you may need a root canal, or worse, an extraction. If you suspect that you have a cavity, make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.
Periodontal (Gum) Disease
The number one cause of tooth loss in American adults, gum disease often begins with mild symptoms such as swollen or bleeding gums. This early form of the disease is called gingivitis. Once gum disease progresses to periodontitis, gum recession, bone degeneration, and tooth loss may occur.
Lack of Dental Care
Seeing the dentist for twice yearly checkups allows the doctor to monitor your whole mouth and look for signs of trouble. Catching small problems, like cavities, before they escalate can help prevent tooth loss.
Poor Oral Hygiene
One step you can take to keep your teeth healthy is to take good care of them. Make brushing twice a day and flossing often a priority.
Certain Chronic Conditions
Individuals with medical issues such as diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis may have a higher than average chance of developing gum disease, which can increase your odds of losing teeth.