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Bone loss from a single missing tooth?

R

Robb

Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2013
Messages
22
A month ago I had to have one of my top premolars pulled because for some time a filling had been loose and I didn't know it and decay formed under it and earlier this year it finally broke. Anyway aside from feeling very weird having a space there, I have been reading about how even a single tooth missing can cause bone loss and the adjacent teeth to start collapsing inward toward the empty space. This has gotten me pretty worried because I obviously don't want that to happen. The only solution though is an implant and from what I've read they cost thousands of dollars and involve up to a year of work to complete. Even if I could manage to get enough money together to pay for it being as terrified of any type of dental procedure as I am I don't know how I would ever be able to bring myself to go through with it. I just don't know what to do, how serious is the bone loss issue and how much time would I have before problems start. I've read that teeth can start shifting into the empty space almost immediately and other people tell me they've had a tooth missing for years and never noticed any issue.

Even without the bone loss issues though I would certainly love to have a tooth there again. Is it true that you can't even tell it isn't a real tooth once the procedure is done with? I wish all this was over with, it's been such a traumatic experience. Years ago I had a nightmare where I dreamed I lost a tooth and woke up in a sheer panic, and I still remember how relieved I was that it was just a dream. Losing any teeth was always one of my biggest fears and now it's really happened. :(

Anyway I just wanted to ask about how bad it would be if nothing was done, or is it important to get an implant to prevent any serious future problems and what type of ordeal I would be facing.
 
lillyh

lillyh

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 15, 2013
Messages
691
For some people it takes awhile for teeth to shift....I've had an empty space on top by me canines since I was a teenager and the gap is almost closed..So 40 years it slowly moved...But everyone is different..
 
carole

carole

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Jan 5, 2012
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7,921
Location
UK
If you want the gap filling, you could ask your dentist to do a bridge or have a false tooth on a plate. I would make an appointment and discuss how you feel with the dentist. They may have a solution that you can afford.

Everyone is different in how they feel about missing teeth, it also depends on where they are, I have a gap and it is driving me mad. I am going to see about getting it filled somehow, it won't be an implant as I cannot afford this myself.

See the dentist they can help you :)
 
lillyh

lillyh

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 15, 2013
Messages
691
Carole,
I'm pretty sure they can make a partial plate with one tooth! My dentist made my impressions the other day and he was showing me all kinds of partials for different circumstances..One had teeth only on the back sides , the other had two teeth here and there...Maybe it is possible? My partials are expensive but I am going to ask if we can do a temp partial and get the permanent one next year when my insurance kicks in again..Other wise it is 1800.00:(
 
R

Robb

Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2013
Messages
22
Thanks, I think an implant would be the only thing I'd really want to consider since a bridge would basically destroy the two adjacent teeth and I hear they don't last all that long, plus it wouldn't do anything at all to prevent bone loss from the missing tooth. It's really expensive unfortunately and I'm not sure I could even go through with it, the whole thing sounds terrifying.

As for my wisdom teeth I don't know what I can do about that. I'm hoping my gums will build up back to where they are about level with my back teeth so there won't be that huge drop off, and the back edges feel so sharp now I'm going to ask if he can do anything about that. Maybe polish the edges down or something.

Mostly I just feel terrible about myself now, it's hard to describe. I had never lost a tooth in my whole life and now even though it's just the one premolar and my wisdom teeth it's like I'm not complete anymore. My bite still feels weird too, like my back molars are coming together before my front teeth. If only I could go back in time and kick myself so they would never have gotten into this shape. People with perfect teeth don't realize how lucky they are.
 
brit

brit

Super Moderator
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Mar 23, 2006
Messages
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In My Dental Happy Place
the whole thing sounds terrifying.
I>M>E> A single molar implant is not terrifying at all. In the UK the cost would be around GBP2,000 but it could last your lifetime.
You have done the worst bit already which is the extraction of the tooth and the healing. In a straightforward case 4 months is a more typical timescale than a year. I think it is best to do the treatment in 2 stages (3 if including the extraction) rather than 'implant in a day' style stuff.

BTW I can relate to the gap feeling incredibly weird...so did mine but I had decided on having an implant before I had the extraction but had to wait a couple of months for healing.
 
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