When you have missing teeth, it can affect the stability and structure of your jaw. An absence of teeth causes the jaw bone to resorb or shrink and can lead to further dental complaints. The following information explains how this can happen.
What Is Bone Resorption?
Your bones, just like other body parts, are comprised of living cells that change constantly. Therefore, bone resorption is part of this type of biological process and results after teeth are extracted or lost. According to the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine, some parts of the jaw bone continue to grow while other parts resorb or break down. The bone's cells, known as osteoblasts, build up the bones while osteoclasts are cells that break down the bone. When these processes occur simultaneously, it is called bone remodeling. Therefore, you strengthen your jaw bone when you give it some type of physical stimulus. This is done through biting or chewing. When you cannot bite or chew down because of a missing tooth, osteoclasts begin to break down the bone. The publication, Frontiers in Physiology, adds that you will still be able to form new bone with a missing tooth. However, the rate of bone loss is greater.
How Much Bone Is Lost after an Extraction?
The Indian Journal of Dentistry points out that the removal of teeth is often related to bone loss. Around 25% of the bone can be lost in the first year after a tooth is extracted. Bone loss is also the result of advanced gum disease, which also contributes to tooth loss. In addition, the National Institutes of Health cites that osteoporosis can lead to jaw bone resorption in elderly periodontal patients. However, the main reason for jaw bone loss involves the loss of teeth. That is why you should have any missing teeth replaced. If you want to improve your oral health, you need to have missing teeth replaced.
Do you have a periodontal concern that is related to tooth loss? If so, we can answer your questions. We can treat advanced forms of gum disease that lead to the loss of teeth. Call us today to schedule a periodontal exam. Ensure your future oral health through professional deep cleanings and routine at-home dental care.