Going through tooth loss is an emotional roller coaster, especially if you’re a young adult. It’s easy to feel embarrassed, self-conscious, and even hopeless about the future of your smile. You might even dread the idea of having to wear dentures in your 20s. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Tooth loss isn’t the end of a beautiful smile, it’s only a trying obstacle that you can overcome. Modern dentistry solutions and a great dental care team can help you regain a full, healthy smile, even if you’ve experienced an extensive or complete loss of teeth.
Many people consider tooth loss as something that seniors face, not young adults. It’s true that adults aged 65+ are much more likely to have lost all of their teeth, but extensive or complete tooth loss in young adults isn’t impossible either. On average, young adults over the age of 20 have lost as many as three teeth, and 5% of adults between ages 20 and 65 have a complete loss of teeth.
Tooth loss happens in young adults for many reasons, but the two biggest culprits are tooth decay and gum disease.
Tooth decay can wreak havoc on enamel, eventually causing enough damage that treatment may no longer be a viable option. When teeth are no longer structurally sound, the healthiest choice is usually to have them extracted.
Gum disease is the most common cause of tooth loss in adults. While decay directly attacks the teeth, bacteria and infection from gum disease take a more indirect route. Instead, the infection and inflammation attack the gum tissue, causing it to recede, erode, and literally pull away from the teeth. Infection can also begin to erode bone in the jaw.
The combination of gum erosion and bone loss leaves teeth wiggly, loose, and unable to be saved once gum disease has reached an advanced stage.
The mouth and body share a strong connection, and that means physical health problems can easily lead to oral health trouble.
Some examples of medical conditions connected to tooth loss include:
Medications or medical treatment can also significantly increase your risk of developing tooth loss. Chemotherapy treatment for cancer is a notable example of this. Prescription medications leading to immune system suppression and severe chronic dry mouth also increase the risks of gum disease and resulting tooth loss.
The biggest fear young adults face when experiencing tooth loss is the worry that others will know their new teeth are fake. It’s already tough to go through tooth loss, the last thing you want to feel is the worry that you’ll still have to hide your smile because of unnatural or fake-looking dentures.
If you’re in this boat, we have great news. Modern dental restorations are beautiful and incredibly realistic in appearance. All you need to do is find a talented dentist who will bring an artistic touch to the restoration of your choice.
Dentures are the first thing that comes to mind if you’re facing complete loss of teeth. You might think dentures are something for older people, but dentures in your 20s are more common than you might realize.
Modern designs look incredibly realistic in appearance, and the dentures themselves can be very comfortable and stable. Traditional dentures are also the most affordable solution for treating extensive or complete loss of teeth.
You can’t beat dental implant technology for the most natural-looking and feeling restoration. Dental implants can be used to replace individual teeth or an entire arch of teeth. Implant-supported dentures combine the best of implants and dentures, and they’re especially ideal for otherwise healthy young adults.
Dental implant treatment is more complex than dentures as oral surgery is involved, but the benefits are worth it. Your dentist will help you determine if dental implants are right for your needs.
You’re not alone on your journey through tooth loss and smile rehabilitation. The team at First Dental Associates will be by your side through every step, from protecting your oral health with necessary extractions to unveiling your new stunning dental restorations.
A smile restoration consultation is a perfect way to learn more about your oral health and gain valuable insight into how your tooth loss can be treated. You’ll discover if you’re a candidate for dental implants or dentures, and what you can expect from treatment. Most importantly, your dentist will help you create a long-term treatment plan to prevent further tooth loss and maintain optimal oral health.
Schedule a consultation today by calling our Reading, MA office or requesting a visit online.