Tooth loss can significantly affect your ability to eat and limit the types of foods that you can include in your diet. Even if you choose a traditional bridge or denture to restore your smile, you may find that you’re not able to chew as effectively as you could before.
An incomplete tooth replacement – that is one that only replaces the crown and not the root – will not be able to tolerate the forces needed to process crunchy or fibrous foods, like fresh fruits and vegetables.
Alternatively, dental implants can help patients maintain a healthy and nutritious diet that includes a variety of food groups. If you want to continue to enjoy all of your favorite foods, you should consult with an oral surgeon to see if dental implants can be used to restore your smile after tooth loss.
Consequences Of Tooth Loss
Tooth loss has a number of consequences for patients. The remaining teeth in the smile are likely to shift out of position to fill the gap when the missing tooth is not replaced. This can subject those teeth to unusual forces and strain when chewing.
Even if you do replace the missing tooth with a traditional bridge or denture, you still may not regain maximum chewing function. Those appliances lack a root-like structure, so they are limited in their ability to chew.
Furthermore, tooth loss also leads to bone loss when the missing tooth’s root is not replaced. That bone loss can make the connection between the jaw and surrounding teeth weaker and compromise chewing function as well.
How Dental Implants Preserve Chewing Function
Fortunately, working with an oral surgeon to replace your missing teeth using dental implants can help to preserve nearly all of your chewing ability and eliminate the need for dietary restrictions after tooth loss.
Dental implants essentially function like artificial tooth roots. After they are placed in the jaw, the bone forms a permanent bond with them, and they become a fixture in the patient’s smile.
As a result of that osseointegration, implant-supported crowns, bridges and dentures are able to withstand chewing forces approximating those absorbed by biological teeth. Patients are then able to chew everything that they could before (although you still shouldn’t nibble on non-food items).
To learn more about how dental implants can preserve your ability to eat all of your favorite foods, call our office and speak to one of our knowledgeable staff members.