Implants Versus Dentures

By: Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

Thanks to modern dentistry, loss of a tooth – or many teeth – doesn’t have to be permanent. With a small investment of time, money and skilled expertise, it’s possible to replace teeth with implants or dentures.

When our patients are facing the loss of one or more teeth, they come to us for counseling on the best path forward. We consider it part of our customer care to walk them through the options and make sure they understand the pros and cons of each option. Dr. Elizabeth and Dr. Jeff love helping our patients understand the best choice for their individual circumstances. Here’s a quick summary as a starting point.

Implants: The Pros

The best part about implants: They feel and behave like your original teeth. You care for them in a similar way, so you likely don’t need to embrace any fresh routines or invite any new bottles or tubes into your bathroom cabinet. They will prevent neighboring teeth from migrating, so they preserve your bite. Because they are anchored in the bone, they help preserve bone mass in the jaw, Once they are established, they nearly take care of themselves. The feel of chewing, the nuances of speaking, the sensation when you run your tongue along the inside of your mouth – these will all feel completely familiar. Implants are built to last a lifetime, and they almost always do.

Implants: The Cons

Dental implants can take awhile from start to finish. Typically, it’s about six months between initial surgery and final placement of the abutment and crown. There is usually some healing time of the implant which will continue to leave you toothless for awhile. If, however, the missing tooth is in the front of the mouth, we can place a temporary tooth for cosmetic reasons. Depending on your situation, implants may cost more than other options.

Dentures: The Pros

Dentures can be crafted and placed in a shorter time period than implants. They don’t usually require surgery, but sometimes bone recontouring can be necessary to get the denture to fit just right. The initial cost of dentures is lower than most implant replacement options; however, they may need to be replaced as the shape of the jaw, mouth and adjacent teeth change over time, so in the long run may end up costing more.

Dentures: The Cons

Dentures will never feel like your natural teeth. They must be removed for cleaning, and because they can trap food, cleaning is extra important. Denture wearers may have to forgo some of their old eating habits such as corn on the cob. Because they don’t help preserve bone mass in the jaw, denture wearers are likely to experience ongoing jaw bone deterioration, which may prevent them from being a candidate for implants at a later time. Subsequent bone loss may contribute to a sunken appearance of the lower cheeks.

We hope this summary helps you understand your options. We look forward to evaluating your personal situation, and helping you embark on the tooth restoration program that fits your needs. Call us today at 651-482-8412 for your exam and consultation!

Teeth Replacement Options

By Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

Choosing the right tooth replacement method should start with an exam and a dialogue with your dentists, Dr. Elizabeth and Dr. Jeff. They are happy to take the time you need to understand the variables of your available options, including dental health, overall health, how long it will last, how long it will take, and financial impact. We want to help you choose the treatment that makes the most sense for your situation and bring you the greatest satisfaction.

Replacing Teeth with Dental Implants

Dental implants consist of three components. A titanium post is fixed into the bone where a tooth was. The jaw bone grows back around the implant, holding it firmly. When the implant has integrated with the bone, an abutment is fitted on the implant, and then a crown is attached to the abutment.

Implants help keep adjacent teeth and your entire mouth more resilient to deterioration. When a tooth is lost, a few things begin to take place that may not be easily evident to the eye, but can have significant negative consequences for both health and appearance. Tooth roots not only help hold teeth in place, they are also essential in maintaining health in the adjacent gums and supporting bones.

Thus, tooth loss can cause bone loss in the jawbone. This is a problem because it can interfere with the integrity of the roots and stability of nearby teeth. This bone loss is also responsible for the “sunken” appearance of the lower cheeks which we see in people who have lost back teeth. Because this bone loss is gradual, it causes people who wear dentures to find that their dentures are increasingly hard to fit and keep in place, over time.

With an implant, bite function is fully restored to as good as new. Neighboring teeth are prevented from shifting. The jaw bone is much more stable and stays where it belongs. Additionally, implants look and feel like your own teeth, and you care for them just the same as your regular teeth. Plus, the longevity is unmatched, with them lasting many years.

The comfort, function and appearance of a dental implant explain why they have become so popular.

Replacing Teeth with All-on-4® Dental Implants

All-on-4® Dental Implants are a relatively new dental reconstruction. In a way, they are a hybrid of implants and a bridge. With this technique, four (or more) implants are placed in the jawbone and an entire arch of reconstructed upper or lower teeth are affixed to the four (or more) imlants. This is a more comfortable, stable and long-lasting option than traditional dentures. Plus, they look and feel just like “real” teeth.

Replacing Teeth with Fixed Bridges

A fixed bridge fills in the gap caused by one or more missing teeth by using surrounding teeth as anchors. A bridge can be a fairly quick way to replace teeth, but since it relies on the neighboring teeth, the integrity of these anchor teeth is reduced. Bridges can also be more difficult to keep clean than other tooth replacement options because food will trap under the “fake” teeth.

Replacing Teeth with Removable Partial Dentures

Partial dentures are able to replace one or more teeth in an arch They consist of replacement teeth attached to a plastic base and often a metal framework, which is supported by the gums and teeth. They are removed for cleaning. They are more comfortable and secure than full dentures, and usually cost less than implants or bridges.

Replacing Teeth with Full Dentures

Full dentures are an entire set of artificial lower and upper teeth, held in place by suction. They are removed for cleaning. When they’re brand new, they may feel awkward and speaking and eating might require practice. Over time, they may stop fitting properly as bone mass degrades.

To learn more about your tooth replacement options, call us at Eggert Family Dentistry, 651-482-8412.

Why It’s Important to Replace Missing Teeth

By: Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

Everyone wants a full set of strong, healthy, functional teeth. They enable us to eat and enjoy a wide variety of food, chew that food to get maximum nutritional benefits from it, and speak clearly. And hey, they also just look good. When you’ve got a full smile of clean healthy teeth, it’s easy to feel confident when you’re talking, eating, and laughing.

Most of us start off with a full set of 32 teeth, and many of us have our wisdom teeth removed during elective surgery, leaving us with 28 teeth to take care of. However, due to a variety of reasons, many of us loose at least one tooth by middle age, and by age 65, one in four people in the U.S. has lost all their teeth.

Causes of Tooth Loss

Tooth loss is caused by many factors.

Injuries such as falls or sports accidents can cause tooth loss. Even without immediate tooth loss, sometimes there’s sufficient trauma to the jaw bone and gums that a tooth sustains hidden damage in the nerve and root, which may take months or years to become obvious or fully abscess.

Periodontal disease may cause tooth loss. With this condition, the architecture supporting the tooth, like the bone, ligament, and gums, is damaged or destroyed. When this occurs, a tooth becomes loose and painful and often can no longer be saved.

Tooth decay results from bacteria converting the starch and sugar that accumulates in your mouth into acids, which damage the protective layer of tooth enamel and cause cavities. Some teeth are inherently prone to increased cavities due to deep grooves which trap food, tight and misaligned places which are hard to clean, or thin tooth enamel.

Excessive wear from clenching or grinding your teeth can also put a lot of stress on the teeth, causing structural damage in the form of cracks or fractures. As strong as teeth are, this structural damage compounds over time and occasionally an abscess will form from bacteria accumulating in the crack or the damage will be so severe there is no longer any way to save the tooth.

Extra acid in the oral environment will attack the hard enamel surface of a tooth. The enamel goes through a chemical process that is like dissolving. With this thin and weak enamel, the tooth is more prone to excessive wear or decay and can be lost as mentioned above. These extra acids can be from food or drink, acid reflux disease (including GERD), or systemic problems in how your body gets air and breathes.

Many Reasons to Replace Missing Teeth

When you lose a tooth, there are many reasons to replace it.

First, there’s your confidence and self-image. If you’ve got a visible gap in your smile, you are likely to smile less. You may be self conscious when you eat or laugh. In some cases, you may have trouble with a few sounds as you speak.

But beyond just your winning smile, there are other concrete and medical reasons why it’s important to replace missing teeth. Each tooth plays a crucial role in your mouth’s function. A missing tooth can shift your bite pressure onto other teeth, and over time, neighboring teeth may migrate into the space the missing tooth once occupied. Missing teeth also invite plaque to build up in hard-to-clean spots, which can encourage gum infections that might lead to further tooth loss. Also, the bone which formerly anchored the tooth will start to deteriorate and diminish, which can jeopardize neighboring teeth.

Eggert Family Dentistry and Tooth Restoration

Deciding whether and how to replace a missing tooth is a personal choice each person should discuss with our dental team. If you have experienced or are anticipating tooth loss, please come in for a consultation. Dr. Elizabeth and Dr. Jeff will be more than happy to explain your options for restoring your beautiful smile, and to help you understand why your tooth was jeopardized and how to improve the conditions for your remaining teeth. Call us today for an appointment, 651-482-8412.

Tooth Replacement Options

By: Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

Losing a permanent tooth can be a scary situation. Unfortunately, missing a tooth can keep people from smiling – one of our favorite things! Fortunately, there are some excellent options when it comes to replacing a lost tooth. At Eggert Family Dentistry, we offer three primary solutions for missing teeth: implants, bridges, and partial dentures.

Implants

As opposed to bridges that are anchored to natural teeth, implants are titanium fixtures that are anchored to the jawbone underneath the gums. Once the base of the implants is securely fastened, Dr. Elizabeth or Dr. Jeff will place an abutment on the fixture and affix the realistic, tooth-looking crown.

All candidates for dental implants must have healthy gums and a sturdy jawbone. Implants are most similar to natural teeth and can last for decades.

Bridges

Bridges “bridge” the gap left behind by the missing tooth with a prosthetic, or fake, tooth. Bridges have been used for ages and they generally hold up well. They can be more difficult to keep clean since teeth are fused together.

There are three main types of bridges:

Traditional bridge: These bridges join the natural teeth with fake, or pontic teeth. Traditional bridges are the most common types of bridges and are anchored by crowns on the natural teeth.

Cantilever bridge: These bridges are similar to traditional bridges. However, they only anchor to one natural tooth as opposed to two. It is much more difficult to assure the bridge can withstand chewing forces, but cantilever bridges can be good for certain situations.

Maryland bridge: These bridges fuse the pontic tooth to the back of the adjacent teeth with metal bands. Again, a Maryland bridge isn’t able to function as well as natural teeth, but under some circumstances, they are nice as they are very conservative for the anchor teeth.

Partial dentures

Partial dentures, or partials, are fake teeth attached to a metal frame. The frames have a plastic, gum-colored base, camouflaging them amidst the natural teeth and gums. Partial dentures fit fairly snugly between the natural teeth and can sometimes be repaired if necessary.

Dentures have been a popular go-to because they are often less expensive than bridges or implants. However, they can take some time to adjust to since they will never function as well as natural teeth.

If you’re missing a permanent tooth, give us a call at 651.482.8412. We would be happy to schedule a consultation for you with Dr. Elizabeth or Dr. Jeff in order to help you determine which solution is right for you!

Restoring Teeth with Implants: The Importance of Records in Creating a Healthy Smile

How did this start?

As a child, Frank had a bicycle accident that broke four of his upper front teeth. They were repaired with crowns at the time but Frank knew they weren’t going to last forever. In 2017, the teeth began showing signs of infection. Dr. Elizabeth referred him to the endodontist who determined that the teeth couldn’t be saved and would need to be extracted. Dr. Elizabeth suspected that in addition to the history of trauma, part of the reason for the infection was that Frank’s lower teeth were crowded and putting a lot pressure on his top teeth. Before having the teeth extracted, Dr. Elizabeth recommended Frank go through the records process to determine the best option for replacing them.

What did Frank want?

Frank’s main concern was getting his mouth back to a healthy state and preserving the function of his teeth. He had been hoping to keep his natural teeth for as long as possible, but he understood that the infection had developed to the point where extracting the teeth would be the only way to successfully treat it. It was also important to Frank that he be able to eat and speak normally after his teeth were restored.

What was involved?

At the records appointment, Dr. Elizabeth took photos and x-rays of Frank’s teeth and did a thorough muscle and joint evaluation. She used the information gathered at that appointment to develop a comprehensive treatment plan for Frank. She presented him with several options for replacing his upper front teeth and Frank decided to do an implant bridge as it would offer the most long-term predictability and look and function the most like natural teeth. The first step in Frank’s treatment plan was having the four infected upper teeth extracted and two implants placed by the oral surgeon, Dr. Karl Andreasen. Dr. Andreasen then made a temporary bridge for Frank to wear while the implants healed. While his implants were integrating, Dr. Elizabeth recommended that Frank start Invisalign to fix the crowding in his lower teeth. Straightening out Frank’s lower teeth would help get his bite to a more stable position and decrease the excessive force that he was putting on his upper front teeth. Dr. Elizabeth didn’t want Frank to put his planned all-porcelain implant supported bridge at risk like his teeth had been. Frank completed his Invisalign treatment after 14 aligners and was ready to move on to the final phase of his treatment, restoring his upper front teeth. Dr. Elizabeth took impressions and worked with a local lab to fabricate Frank’s final bridge, which he had placed recently this year.

What does Frank think?

Frank is very excited to have something that looks and functions similarly to the four natural teeth he had to lose. He is also happy to be infection-free. Frank said that he understood going into this that it was going to be a long process. “I know things don’t happen overnight, and the details of the procedures were explained very well.” When asked what he would say to someone considering going through a similar procedure, Frank said, “I would tell them to bear with it. It takes as long as it needs to take to be done the right way. You’ll be well taken care of.” As for what Frank thinks of his new smile? “I am very happy! I’m looking forward to eating a hamburger!”

We’re so grateful to have you as a patient, Frank – thank you for putting your trust in us!

Replacing A Failing Bridge – Jackie’s Story

By: Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

How did this start?

Jackie had been a long time patient of Dr. Furey. The first time she saw Dr. Elizabeth, it was for a severe toothache. Unfortunately, the ache was coming from the progression of decay on her upper front teeth that were the anchors for her bridge. Saving the teeth wouldn’t be easy, but to do so, Jackie needed root canal treatment and a new bridge.

What did she want?

Jackie was concerned about needing to have her bridge replaced, but wanted to make the best choice for her oral care long-term. Jackie wanted to try to keep her natural teeth, if possible. However, a short time after referring Jackie to have a root canal done, Jackie’s original bridge ended up breaking off and her teeth were fractured at the gum line and no longer restorable. This required Dr. Elizabeth and Jackie to change the course of action and it was decided that an implant bridge would be more stable and predictable long-term than relying on natural teeth for an even longer-span natural tooth bridge.

What was involved?

Since Jackie’s original bridge had fractured at the gum line, Jackie needed an immediate solution to buy time until she could undergo her implant surgery. Dr. Elizabeth fabricated a retainer with a temporary bridge to replace her smile for the short-term. This option also gave the oral surgeon, Dr. Andreasen, access to remove the broken roots and place two implants for the anchors for her new implant bridge. Jackie was able to transition into a temporary implant bridge that hooked into her implants so she no longer needed to wear the retainer all the time. After a few months of healing, Jackie had impressions taken by Dr. Elizabeth and her new implant bridge was finalized.

What does she think?

Jackie was very excited to finish her treatment and move forward with a healthy beautiful smile. She was able to choose which shade she wanted and she wanted a nice bright color for her front teeth. Jackie is so excited that you can now see her front teeth when she smiles! Jackie made a big commitment in going through the implant process, but she knows it was worth it because now she is decay free and is able to trust her implants for eating. Congratulations Jackie!

Eric’s Story – Using the All-on-4® Implant Technique

By: Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

How did this start?
Eric’s complex medical history and treatment needs led to dental issues like severe dry mouth. Because of these factors and despite good homecare, cavities and decay spread quickly for him and required extensive treatments. Over the course of 10 years he required 9 new crowns and multiple fillings in an effort to save his teeth. It was when Eric had to start having some teeth extracted in 2016 that he and Dr. Elizabeth agreed it was time to find a better-lasting, long-term solution. Based on the records Eric had taken in 2013 and his treatment since, Dr. Elizabeth proposed the All-on-4® treatment concept as the best solution to stabilize the health of Eric’s mouth.

What did he want?
Eric spends half of his time at home in Minnesota and the other half at his home in Maui. Keeping up with complex dental needs and many appointments on top of numerous health problems made coming for consistent dental visits difficult so he wanted to come up with a permanent way to improve his oral health. Eric wasn’t overly concerned with the esthetics of his mouth, but he felt that as long as he was considering doing more comprehensive work that he would like to see a whiter, more even smile.

What was involved?
The process started in August of 2016 when Eric had all of his remaining upper teeth extracted and 6 implants placed by Dr. Karl Andreasen of Momenta Oral Surgery. In March of 2017 Eric took the next step in the process and had all of his lower teeth extracted and 5 implants placed to prepare for his final full-arch prostheses. After each of these surgical appointments, an interim (temporary) prosthesis was placed in order to sustain most of his normal function as well as give him teeth to smile with. Eric’s time in his interim prostheses was extended because his health conditions kept one lower implant from fully integrating.

This implant was replaced and after a successful integration check, Eric was ready to take impressions for his final All-on-4® prostheses in March of this year. He decided he preferred the full zirconia, all porcelain material due to its strength and esthetics and he was able to select the shade for his brand new smile! Eric came in for a try-in 3 weeks later and gave the go-ahead for Dr. Elizabeth to have the lab move to final creation. On May 2nd Eric came back and had both of his new arches placed and left with a brand new set of teeth.

What did he think?
After years of treatment planning, Eric was very excited to have a new and healthy set of “teeth” to chew, smile, and talk with. After looking at the final result he was very pleased with how the entire treatment turned out and said, “I shouldn’t have waited so long!” Eric was leaving for his home in Maui just days after the procedure was done and felt relieved to know he was traveling with a stable and healthy mouth. When asked how he felt about the All-on-4® treatment process Eric said, “It was totally worth it. I have one less thing to worry about!” His especially likes the even white color of his new smile! Congratulations Eric! Thank you for putting your trust in us!

The All-on-4® Technique – Revolutionizing Dental Implants at Eggert Family Dentistry

By Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

Dr. Elizabeth and Dr. Jeff are excited to share information with our Eggert Family Dentistry patients about a revolutionary option for full-arch dental implants. We’ve found the All-on-4® treatment is an excellent solution for patients who have a full arch of missing or soon-to-be missing teeth and require a modern way to replace their teeth.

The All-on-4® Treatment Concept Offers Many Advantages
Over traditional dentures, which is the classic way to replace a full arch of teeth, the implant supported prostheses fabricated for an All-on-4® patient allows for great stability because of the anchorage of the implants in the jaw bone. There are fewer implants required to anchor the All-On-4® than if we would replace all of your missing teeth with individual implants so the costs are significantly decreased. It is also almost always possible to place temporary provisional teeth onto the implants the same day as the surgery. These provisionals look and feel much like natural teeth, leaving you to lead a normal life after surgery.

All-on-4® Dental Implants Are Immediately Effective
For many patients, we can place implants and load the temporary prothesis in a single All-on-4® treatment. With All-on-4®, two implants are secured perpendicularly to the jawbone and two implants are secured at a 45-degree angle. The angle of the second pair of implants gives us access to more bone without having to wait for bone grafts to grow. The angulation of the implants allows for the procedure to be done without having to use bone grafts.
If you’re a candidate for the procedure, the All-on-4® treatment may enable you to leave the oral surgery office with a brand-new prothesis that provides immediate improvements to your ability to chew, speak, and flash a beautiful smile.

All-on-4® Dental Implants Are Long-Term
Like other dental implants, the All-on-4® treatment is a long-term solution. It is more cost-effective than individual implants for multiple teeth on the same jaw. And once placed, your prothesis will provide years of confidence, comfort, and self-esteem. It’s no wonder most patients would recommend going ahead with the All-on-4® treatment to others considering the procedure!

Eggert Family Dentistry is looking forward to sharing our experience with the All-on-4® treatment later this month. By coordinating with our tremendous oral surgeons, together we are able to provide this magnificent option. If a full-arch restoration is in your future, schedule a consultation with us to discuss your treatment options, including All-on-4®. We look forward to finding a solution for you!

Your Top Dental Implant Questions, Answered

By: Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

Dental implants are becoming one of the most common dental procedures. At Eggert Family Dentistry we are working with our patients to replace missing teeth with dental implants nearly every week. If you’re missing teeth, implants help restore your smile long-term. Most of our patients have a lot of questions about this procedure. Here are some of the questions we hear most frequently.

1. What are dental implants?
Dental implants are medical-grade titanium posts that are placed in the upper or lower jaw by an oral surgeon or periodontist. Implants provide an anchor for replacement teeth. They are very strong. Once implanted, new bone fuses with the device, holding it in place. This process is called osseointegration. Sometimes, dentists can install replacement teeth immediately after placing dental implants. Other implants require osseointegration to be complete before replacement teeth can be installed. This can take up to several months.

2. Who is a candidate for dental implants?
Patients who are missing one or more teeth are likely good candidates for dental implants. Replacing missing teeth can help improve speech, chewing, and mouth comfort. Most patients also enjoy higher confidence and a radiant, complete smile.

3. Will my body reject a dental implant?
The materials used to construct a dental implant are compatible with the human body. It is rare that a patient’s body rejects a dental implant. In most of these cases, the patient is allergic to titanium (which is very rare) or the patient is severely immunocompromised.

Sometimes, a patient’s body will reject a dental implant due to inadequate oral hygiene and care post-surgery. Replacement teeth require the same care as our natural teeth. Regular brushing, flossing, and recare visits will greatly reduce the chance that your dental implants would fail.

Also, occasionally, a bone graft is needed in order to get enough anchorage into the bone by the dental implant. In rare instances, there can be complications with the graft material.

4. How long do dental implants last?
Dental implants can last decades with the proper care. This includes following good oral hygiene habits such as regular brushing, flossing, and preventative care visits to Eggert Family Dentistry. We’ve had patients whose dental implants have lasted the rest of their lifetimes.

5. Will people notice I have dental implants?
Nope! It’s possible you may not even be able to tell which of your teeth are natural and which are the replacement. We design each replacement tooth to match the shape and color of your surrounding teeth so it fits seamlessly with your smile. The only time you’ll see it is on your annual x-rays.

6. What can I expect during my dental implant surgery?
If you’re getting a single implant, the surgery will likely take 30 to 45 minutes. Placing multiple implants can take more time. Once the surgeon places the implant, either a temporary crown or an implant cover is most often placed as it heals and integrates into the body. Most people only need over-the-counter pain medications after implant surgery, if that.

7. How much do dental implants cost?
Dental implants do require an investment. A single implant can cost between $3,000 and $5,000. But remember, they last for decades and can improve your quality of life immensely. Plus, failing to treat the cause of why your tooth is missing in the first place can be much more expensive over the years than fixing the problem now.

8. Will my dental insurance cover the cost of dental implants?
It depends. Some dental insurance carriers will cover at least some of the cost or some of the components of your dental implants. . If you’re considering dental implants, we’ll help you understand what your insurance may or may not cover.

We’d love the opportunity to talk with you further about dental implants and determine if you’re a good candidate. Contact Eggert Family Dentistry today to schedule your consultation with Dr. Elizabeth or Dr. Jeff.

The Vital Role of Teeth and Chewing in Overall Health

By Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

It’s an unfortunate fact of life: sometimes we last longer than our teeth. It’s not uncommon to lose teeth to accidents, decay, disease or deterioration.

Replace Missing Teeth with Implants or Dentures

Dentures have historically been the go-to solution, but dentures definitely are not teeth and satisfaction varies. Some people find them awkward or painful, or have trouble chewing. Luckily, dental implants can provide a tremendous improvement. Implant technology is one of the great advances of the last few decades, and enable everyone to have a full set of functional “teeth” well into an advanced old age.

Why Tooth Replacement is Crucial to Health

If you’re facing missing teeth, why is it important to replace them?

While some people might be tempted to soldier on with missing teeth, this means relying on gum surfaces for chewing; restricting the diet to soft foods; or pureeing foods to make them palatable. We do not recommend these solutions–they may ultimately have negative impacts on the health of your mouth and body.

Jaw and Gum Issues Due to Missing Teeth

When teeth are missing, you have to work harder to chew. Natural teeth have a bite force of 200-250 pounds and dentures have a bite force around 50 pounds. The soft tissue of the gums can’t approach the strength of either. Over time, you’re at risk of suffering irritated, sore, or even infected gums, which will further diminish your chewing ability.

TMJ disorders may also result from the loss of teeth. The TMJ is the temporomandibular joint, where your jaw connects to your skull. Disorders of this joint can lead to headaches, tooth grinding, locking of the joint, and pain in the joint. When you are missing teeth, your TMJ has to work extra hard to compensate.

The integrity of the bone in the jaw depends on the resistance it experiences during the act of chewing to maintain its strength. When the act of chewing doesn’t place pressure on the jaw, the bone of the jaw weakens over time, becoming prone to fractures and potentially jeopardizing neighboring teeth.

Gastrointestinal Problems Resulting from Inadequate Chewing

Digestion is a complex process depending on multiple organs. Each organ must do its part for successful digestion. The role of chewing is more than simply mechanical and with missing teeth, things get complicated. Long story short, on a purely mechanical level, digestion depends on small food fragments. Large fragments cannot be properly broken down, resulting in incomplete digestion. This means nutrients are not fully extracted. Undigested food can lead to indigestion, discomfort, irregularity and excess gas.

Dental Implants or Dentures Restore Chewing Function

Chewing is essential for good nutrient absorption and a healthy, responsive digestive system. If teeth problems are interfering with your ability to chew, talk to us about your options. We’ll be happy to discuss a treatment plan, and explore the pros and cons of dental implants or dentures to resolve your issues and ensure your oral and digestive health.