Loose teeth are a common dental problem that can occur at any age. They occur when the ligaments and tissues that hold the tooth in place become damaged, which can be caused by various factors such as gum disease, trauma, or tooth decay.
While loose teeth are more commonly associated with children, adults can also experience this dental issue. More particularly, loose teeth are a common problem among adults with gum disease. Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is caused by bacteria that accumulate in the mouth and cause inflammation of the gums. Over time, this inflammation can lead to the deterioration of the bone and tissue that support the teeth, causing them to become loose. Other factors contributing to loose teeth in adults include injury to the mouth, bruxism (teeth grinding), and certain medical conditions such as osteoporosis.
Fortunately, there are several effective treatments for loose teeth in adults. The following are ways that dentists can address this issue:
#1 – Wearing a Mouthguard
A mouthguard is a custom-made removable device to fit over your teeth and protect them from further damage. Depending on your needs, a mouthguard can be made of different materials, such as soft plastic or hard acrylic, and worn during the day or night.
If your loose teeth are caused by bruxism, wearing a mouthguard can help prevent further damage to your teeth and gums by reducing the pressure and grinding during sleep. This can also alleviate any pain or discomfort associated with bruxism.
#2 – Bite Adjustment
Bite adjustment, or occlusal adjustment, is a dental procedure that involves reshaping the teeth to improve their alignment and reduce the pressure on the loose teeth and surrounding areas. A dentist or orthodontist usually performs this procedure.
During a bite adjustment, the dentist will use a dental drill or other tools to remove small amounts of tooth material to create a more even bite. This can help relieve pressure on the loose teeth, allowing them to heal and re-stabilize over time.
#3 – Splinting
Splinting is a dental procedure that involves the use of a dental appliance or splint to stabilize loose teeth. This can be necessary when teeth have become loose due to advanced periodontal disease or trauma. During this procedure, the dentist will attach a splint or wire to the affected teeth to keep them stable and prevent further movement. The splint may be left in place for several weeks or months to allow the teeth to heal and re-stabilize.
#4 – Flap Surgery
A more invasive procedure, flap surgery involves lifting the gum tissue away from the teeth to access and clean the tooth roots and surrounding bone. This procedure is typically done when advanced periodontal disease has caused deep pockets between the teeth and gums, which cannot be cleaned with regular dental treatments. The dentist will make small incisions in the gum tissue to create a flap, which is lifted to expose the tooth roots and surrounding bone. Any damaged tissue or debris is removed, and the area is cleaned and disinfected. The flap is then repositioned and sutured back into place to allow for healing.
#5 – Bone Grafting
Another invasive measure to treat loose teeth is bone grafting. This procedure involves taking bone from another part of the body or using synthetic bone material to fill in areas of bone loss around the teeth. The bone graft material is placed into the area where the tooth root is exposed, and over time, the bone will grow around the graft to create a stable foundation for the tooth.
Seeking Further Treatment
While all of these measures can help the problem of loose teeth, they are not a cure-all solution. To prevent further bone loss and gum disease, seeking further treatment, such as regular dental check-ups and cleanings is important. In some cases, extraction of the loose tooth may be necessary to prevent further damage to surrounding teeth and gums.
Loose teeth can be a serious dental issue, leading to further complications if left untreated. Various treatment options are available, so you must consult with your dentist to address the underlying cause of the problem. With proper care and treatment, loose teeth can be stabilized, and the health of the surrounding teeth and gums can be maintained.
Watertown Dentistry can help if you need a dentist in Watertown, MA! We provide comprehensive dental treatments to maintain good oral health for our patients for good overall well-being. Schedule an appointment today!