Loose teeth can be a source of anxiety for both children and adults. While it is normal for children to experience loose teeth as their permanent teeth come in, adults may find it alarming when their teeth become loose. Loose teeth in adults indicate an underlying dental problem, such as gum disease or an injury. Knowing the causes of loose teeth and what to do about them can help you protect your oral health.
What Causes Loose Tooth in Adults
A variety of factors can cause loose teeth in adults. One of the most common causes is advanced gum disease (periodontal disease), an infection of the gums that can cause the tissue to pull away from the teeth. Other risk factors include trauma, stress, poor dental health, and certain medical conditions.
#1. Periodontal Disease
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is an infection of the gums that can cause the tissue to pull away from the teeth. It is caused by bacteria in plaque that builds up on the teeth and causes inflammation of the gums. Periodontal disease can lead to tooth loss and other serious health complications if left untreated.
Treating periodontal disease involves a combination of professional dental cleanings and at-home oral hygiene. Professional dental cleanings can help remove plaque and tartar buildup, while at-home oral hygiene practices such as brushing and flossing can help prevent further buildup.
Hormonal changes during pregnancy can cause the gums to become more sensitive and inflamed, leading to a condition known as pregnancy gingivitis. This can lead to increased plaque buildup and gum recession, which can cause the teeth to become loose.
To help prevent or reduce the effects of pregnancy gingivitis, pregnant women need to practice good dental hygiene and visit their dentist regularly.
Trauma to the mouth can cause teeth to become loose or even fall out. This can be caused by an accident or sports injury or something as simple as biting down on something hard. If you experience trauma to the mouth, it is important to seek dental care immediately.
When a person is under stress, they may grind or clench their teeth at night, which can put extra pressure on them and cause them to become loose over time. Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing and meditation can help reduce the effects of stress-related teeth grinding. Another option is wearing a bite splint, also called a night guard or mouth guard, while sleeping.
Osteoporosis is a bone disorder that causes bones to become weak and brittle. As a result, even minor bumps and impacts can lead to broken bones. This can also lead to tooth loss, as the weakened bones in the jaw cannot support the teeth properly. To help prevent or reduce the effects of osteoporosis, it is essential to get enough calcium and vitamin D in your diet, exercise regularly, and avoid cigarette smoking.
By understanding the causes of loose teeth and taking steps to address them, you can help keep your teeth healthy and strong.
Should You Be Worried About Loose Tooth?
If you take good care of your teeth, you shouldn’t have to worry about them becoming loose. But if you do experience a loose tooth, you must visit your dentist immediately to determine the cause and receive appropriate treatment.
Treatment Options for Loose Adult Teeth
Non-surgical and surgical treatments may be recommended to treat loose adult teeth. Non-surgical treatments may include professional dental cleanings, at-home oral hygiene practices, and medications. Surgical treatments may include bone grafts, periodontal surgery, and dental implant to prevent further bone loss in the mouth. Your dentist will be able to recommend the best treatment option for you based on your individual needs.
- Splinting: Splinting involves attaching a metal wire to bond two neighboring teeth to stabilize them and prevent further movement.
- Deep Cleaning: Deep cleaning, also known as scaling and root planing, is a procedure that removes plaque and tartar buildup from the teeth and gums. Scaling is done to remove plaque and tartar from the surface of the teeth, while root planing is done to smooth out any rough spots on the root surfaces of the teeth to prevent them from becoming loose.
- Medications: Antibiotics or bisphosphonates may be prescribed to help reduce inflammation and prevent further damage.
- Tissue and bone grafting: Tissue and bone grafting is a surgical procedure that involves taking healthy tissue and bone from another part of the body and transplanting it to the affected area. This helps to strengthen the jaw bone, which can help stabilize loose teeth.
- Flap surgery: This is a procedure in which a flap of gum tissue is lifted to expose the underlying bone. The dentist removes any damaged or diseased tissue and replaces it with a healthy one.
- Guided-tissue regeneration (GTR): GTR is a procedure in which a barrier membrane is placed over the affected area to protect it from bacteria while allowing new tissue to grow. This helps to regenerate healthy tissue and bone, which can help stabilize loose teeth.
At-Home Oral Hygiene Practices To Prevent Loose Teeth
There are a variety of at-home oral hygiene practices that can help prevent loose teeth. These include:
- Brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste.
- Floss daily to remove plaque and food particles from between your teeth.
- Use an antibacterial mouthwash to help reduce bacteria in the mouth.
- Drink plenty of water to keep your mouth hydrated and prevent a dry mouth. A dry mouth can lead to an increased risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
- Eat a balanced diet with plenty of calcium and vitamin D for strong bones.
- Visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and dental checkups.
Get Your Loose Teeth Treated at Superior Cosmetic Dentistry
At Superior Cosmetic Dentistry, we offer a variety of dental treatments to help treat loose teeth, including non-surgical and surgical options. Our experienced team of dentists will work with you to determine the best treatment plan for your needs. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you get your smile back on track!