We all want a bright, healthy smile, and the thought of losing your teeth likely sends shivers down your spine. Unfortunately, losing teeth as an adult is all too common, impacting people of all ages.
Loose teeth might seem inconvenient, whether it’s caused by trauma or illness, but if you don’t address them right away, they can become much worse. So, you must address the issue as soon as possible. Here’s what you need to know about loose teeth and how to deal with them to keep your smile in check.
Common Causes of Loose Teeth
Loose teeth can be caused by several things, including:
- Gum Disease: Also known as gingivitis, gum disease is a common cause of loose teeth. If left untreated, the inflammation can escalate to the periodontium, leading to periodontitis. This condition can result in bone loss, which, in turn, leads to loose teeth.
- Injury or Trauma: Any physical harm or trauma to the mouth can cause your teeth to loosen.
- Osteoporosis: This bone loss disease doesn’t just affect your hips or spine – it can also impact your oral health, leading to loose teeth.
- Teeth Grinding: Often an unconscious habit, teeth grinding can put excessive pressure on your teeth, causing them to become loose over time.
It’s essential to seek professional dental advice if you notice any looseness in your teeth. A dental professional can diagnose the underlying cause and recommend the appropriate treatment.
The best preventative measure is establishing a healthy oral hygiene routine.
- You should regularly visit your dentist for check-ups. Every 6 months is usually sufficient but speak to your dentist about the right number of check-ups for optimum oral hygiene. You may have unique needs that call for more regular visits.
- If you play sports, pick up a mouthguard to prevent loose teeth. You can speak to your dentist about a custom-fitted mouthguard.
- For teeth grinders, a bite splint can help prevent grinding and clenching. Again, talk to your dentist about which solution is right for you.
Dealing with Loose Teeth at Home
If you have a loose tooth or loose teeth, you should make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as possible. The sooner you receive professional help the healthier your mouth and teeth will be. In the meantime, you can seek over-the-counter pain relief and rinse with warm saltwater.
Switch to a soft toothbrush for a gentler oral hygiene routine, and avoid sticky or hard foods that could do more damage.
Consistent home care could help you counteract the issue causing the loose teeth. If you have damaged the tooth, immediate dental care is necessary as this differs from a loose tooth due to other causes.
When to Seek Professional Help
If you have loose teeth persistently, there is likely an underlying cause, and you should speak to your dentist. Also, you should book an emergency dentist if your loose teeth are painful. Often, an underlying issue is driving the loose teeth problem, and the sooner you visit a dentist, the sooner you can rectify the issue. Oral issues can grow out of control rapidly, so quick treatment is always the best source of action.
Dental Treatments for Loose Teeth
There are several treatment courses for loose teeth, and the right solution for you will depend on the cause of your loose tooth.
For example, if your tooth is loose as a result of grinding, your dentist will make a bite splint or mouthguard to prevent further damage. If necessary, the dentist will treat the damaged tooth. If not, you may need to wear the mouthguard until your tooth fixes itself.
If the tooth is loose as a result of an infection or gum disease, the first course of action will be to address the infection or disease. This may naturally allow your tooth or teeth to tighten, but if not, the dentist can take further treatment steps once the underlying issue is dealt with.
If there is no explanation for the loose tooth, your dentist may recommend a deep clean. This will clear away any signs of infection, allowing your teeth time to heal and tighten naturally.
For a seriously damaged tooth, the only option may be extraction. The dentist will (where possible) take steps before this to save your tooth.
Oral Health and Lifestyle Tips
Health habits are key – so brush your teeth and tongue twice daily, and floss every evening. Various flossing tools help people with dexterity issues or tightly spaced teeth, and you should make antibacterial mouthwash a once daily habit, preferably a non-alcoholic option.
If you smoke, speak to your doctor about what help is available. Smoking isn’t just a cancer risk, it also causes gum disease and help is available for people who want to quit.
Finally, make sure you visit your dentist regularly. Prevention is the best form of treatment!
If you have a loose tooth, or several loose teeth, visit your dentist as soon as possible. There is a treatment option, but these can only be implemented once the cause has been determined.
Whether you prefer to visit a Goulburn, Tamworth or Camden Dentist, you’ll find an Aesthetic Dental and Denture Clinic. If you have loose teeth or need an emergency dentist in Camden, contact us today. You can also book a free consultation to discuss removable partial dentures, mouth guards, or other dental procedures.