Our teeth are designed to exist as one cohesive group. Each tooth carries out its role and relies on the others to carry out theirs. As long as everyone shows up, the group exists in harmony.
But if a group member goes missing, panic sets in quickly...
The first one to panic
Think back to when you were a kid and lost a baby tooth. Your adult tooth was just a little white spot on your gums.
It might’ve only taken a week to fully come in or it might have left you toothless for months.
Either way, the control center behind the whole process (your jaw bone) knew exactly what it was doing. It received intel that told it precisely when to start applying pressure on the new tooth to come in. Then it was told exactly how much pressure to apply to make sure it came in at a safe speed. Then, eventually, it received the signal to stop.
That last signal came when the growing tooth hit its partner tooth directly above or below it - because once a tooth meets its match, its fully grown in.
With this in mind, it might not surprise you that if a tooth goes missing, it’s opposing partner tooth is the first one to panic.
Having lost its signal to stop erupting, it often starts again - causing it to grow so far out that its root becomes exposed (or super-erupts). Not only is it extremely painful, but your tooth root is fragile, leaving the entire tooth open to serious damage.
The missing tooth’s partner isn’t the only one that panics. The teeth to its left and right don’t keep their cool for long either.
Teeth need the pressure of the teeth next to them, so when that pressure is suddenly gone, they ‘search’ for it by shifting into the newly formed gap - throwing the mouth’s delicate harmony into even greater imbalance. Maybe they’re just trying to overcompensate to restore peace, but what they’re actually doing is creating a domino effect that nobody asked for.
The shifting puts extra force on already overworked teeth, causing pressure overload on joints, which leads to a painful and likely irreversible circumstance we know we never want - TMJ (or temporomandibular joint pain).
The teeth themselves aren’t the only ones who have trouble dealing with the loss of a group member - the jaw bone copes in its own inconvenient ways.
The jaw bone depends on stimulation from the tooth root to stay alive. Once that tooth root is gone, the jaw has no reason to maintain its thickness and density, so it starts to collapse in on itself. First it starts to shrink width-wise, then height-wise.
When a front tooth is lost and bone shrinks, support is taken away from the lips, leading to wrinkling of lips and skin around the mouth.
If a back tooth and its supporting bone is lost, the bite can collapse and over-close, leading to chronic pain.
If an anterior tooth and supporting bone are lost, speech and pronunciation of words can become difficult.
Save your mouth from itself
The best way to calm a panicking mouth is to trick it into thinking it never lost one of its own in the first place.
How? By bringing in a replacement so close to the real thing, your mouth won’t know the difference. And what is this replacement? A ceramic dental implant.
Now your mouth can breathe a sigh of relief because...
Your implant will give it’s opposing tooth it’s partner back - restoring the signal it needs to stop over-growing and super-erupting on you.
Your implant will give your teeth on either side their pressure back - eliminating their need to drift into the empty space and mess everything up even more.
And arguably the most important part - your jaw bone gets its tooth root back. Human bone binds extremely well to Zirconia (ceramic) and will actually accept your ceramic implant as if it were it’s actual tooth root. This gives your jaw bone all of the stimulation it needs to stop feeling the need to disappear on you.
But your implant gives you so much more than all of this.
Dr. Gary Curatola, expert in the field of implant dentistry and owner of Rejuvenation Dentistry in New York city says:
“Tooth replacement is about more than filling the gaps in your smile. It’s also about restoring your ability to chew properly, to speak with confidence, and to feel good about yourself… Something as simple as a tooth restoration can have a dramatic long-term impact on your physical health, emotional well-being and enjoyment of daily activities.”
The true goal of your ceramic dental implant will be to restore your tooth as if it’d never been gone. That means you can expect your implant to look just like a real tooth, act just like a real tooth, and restore your oral health just like a real tooth.
Whether you’re missing one tooth or multiple teeth, we want to help you. Schedule a consultation with one of our experts today.