Do you remember the joy and excitement you felt as a child when one of your baby teeth became loose? You knew that, within a few days, you’d lose the tooth and get a visit from the tooth fairy!
The emotions you felt as a child were probably just as strong as the frustration and annoyance you feel as an adult when you realize one of your teeth is loose or cracked.
As an adult, you want your teeth to last a lifetime. They are vital to your eating and speaking– two things that adults need to do multiple times each day!
If you have loose or cracking teeth, your next step is very simple, but important: You need to visit a dentist. Both loose and cracked teeth can have different causes, and the earlier you see a dentist, the more likely it is that you can save your teeth.
Sometimes a tooth needs to be removed, in which case it can be replaced by an implant. Even in those cases, visiting the dentist early could prevent the loss of other teeth in the future.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the different causes of loose and cracked teeth to help you understand what you’ll need to do.
Cause 1 Malocclusion
Malocclusion is a fancy word for a bad bite. There are many types of malocclusions, including:
- Overcrowded teeth
Whatever the cause, malocclusions occur when your teeth do not fit together properly. Although you may not experience discomfort, extra pressure is being applied to specific teeth every time you bite down or chew. This extra pressure over time can cause cracked or broken teeth and can also lead to severe jaw pain.
If you have a bad bite and it has already caused a tooth to crack or become loose, it’s important to get your bite corrected. In many cases, your dentist can help correct malocclusion, or depending on the severity of the bite issue, they may refer you to an orthodontist. Not only that, but it’s also important to get the cracked tooth repaired. Cracked teeth can be painful or sensitive to temperature changes, and you shouldn’t have to live with that.
Cause 2 Gum Disease
Loose teeth are often caused by gum disease, which comes in two stages: gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis is the earlier stage of gum disease. It is caused by plaque and calculus buildup on the teeth, which then cause gum inflammation. Periodontitis is more advanced, and the disease infects the gum tissue more seriously. As the plaque and calculus grow beneath the gums, they create pockets of space and cause infection and loss of the supporting bone tissue.
As these pockets grow, the teeth become loose. If your teeth have become loose, then it’s important to see a dentist right away. Periodontitis can only be treated by a professional dentist; you won’t be able to fight it on your own.
If you decide to ignore the loose teeth, you might actually lose the teeth. Not only that, but gum disease can also cause the following issues:
- Persistent bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth
- Overly sensitive teeth to cold and hot
- Gums can become swollen, tender, or bleed often
- The bacteria from your gums can get into your bloodstream, which can then travel to the arteries in the heart and cause them to harden. This can then decrease or even block blood flow to the rest of the body, increasing the risk of heart attack or stroke
Cause 3 Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a condition that affects both men and women. It causes the bones throughout the body to become less dense and more prone to fracture. When the density of the jawbone that supports your teeth begins to drop, the teeth can become loose. In fact, women with osteoporosis are three times more likely to experience tooth loss than women without it.
Cause 4 Accidents
Accidents are a common cause of loose and cracked teeth. Whether you’ve fallen, been hit, or just gotten unlucky, it’s important to treat accidents like a dental emergency. The quicker you visit the dentist, the more likely it is that you can save your teeth.
? What to do
As you can see, most of the causes for loose or cracked teeth cannot be treated at home. While things like brushing and flossing can help prevent teeth from becoming loose, curing the problem often requires professional intervention.
While you wait for your dentist appointment, these tips are also important to remember:
- Avoid playing with your loose tooth – it can be tempting to push loose teeth with your tongue, but this will only make things worse.
- Avoid sticky and crunchy foods. Sticky candies, for instance, can instantly pull your loose tooth out. Crunchy ones can create bigger cracks or cause loose teeth to fall out.
- Continue cleaning your teeth, but do so very gently. Don’t brush or floss with much force; you don’t want to expedite the problem.
Where to go
As you can tell, people with loose or cracking teeth should get to the dentist as soon as possible. If you’re in the Mullins, South Carolina area, then there are many reasons why Blevins Dentistry is the right choice for you.
We have patients who drive as far as 50 miles to experience the Blevins Dentistry difference. We know we can help you feel comfortable and care for your loose or cracked teeth.
With years of experience and an excellent team, we won’t just treat the symptoms; we will identify and treat the cause. Contact us today to schedule an appointment…we’d love to meet you.