Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Can a missing tooth cause problems in my mouth?"
I lost a tooth a few months ago, it's not very noticeable and I'm thinking about leaving my mouth as-is. Is this the best decision, not sure if a missing tooth can cause problems down the road.
Sorry to hear that you lost a tooth, and hope that all is otherwise well. A missing tooth can be a sign of bigger problems, so it is important to make sure that you have the problem fully evaluated by a health care provider. Now, assuming that you have already done that, the next question is about what are the long term consequences of a missing tooth. In some cases, those consequences may be small and may not amount to much. In most cases, however, it is important to replace the missing tooth. This is because one of the properties of bone is that, if you don't apply pressure to it over a prolonged time, the bone will gradually go away. While this may seem counterintuitive, it contributes to jaw pain in people who have used dentures for quite a while, and is a well described fact. The short answer is that you should speak with a health care professional before you decide to leave your mouth as is. It may be worth the investment now to prevent problems down the road. Please speak with your dentist or oral surgeon for more information and guidance about your question and to get better.
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