Adult Tooth Loss
Gum disease and trauma to the mouth are the only reasons for loose teeth in adults. Gum disease begins as gingivitis, an infection that causes red, tender gums that bleed during brushing. Gingivitis is progressive and if left untreated it will eventually advance to periodontitis. Periodontitis results from a build up of plaque on the teeth above and below the gum line. If it is not removed, plaque hardens into tartar(calculus), which irritates and destroys gum tissue. The gums bleed and begin to recede from the teeth, forming pockets that hold bacteria and worsen the infection. In advanced disease, the gums become too weak to hold the teeth and the bacteria infect the underlying jawbone. Eventually, teeth loosen and fall out. Adults may also experience loose teeth after a mouth injury, for example, as a result of a car accident, fall or sports injury,
Loose Teeth in Children
Primary, or baby teeth are meant to be temporary and their loss is expected. Children with numerous cavities who lose their primary teeth because of tooth decay instead of eruption of the permanent teeth need to learn proper brushing habits. Teenagers have a high risk of gingivitis because of poor eating habits and a lack of proper dental hygiene. Snacking on sugary or starchy foods, such as candy or french fries, provides nutrients on which the bacteria in plaque thrive. Additionally, the hormonal fluctuations girls experience during puberty increases gum sensitivity and bleeding.
At times, a tooth will feel loose but the gum soon returns to the normal firmness.Several signs suggest a more serious dental problem. Pain while chewing or sensitivity to cold, hot or sweet foods signal loosening teeth or gum disease. Chronic bad breath may be a sign of bacterial gum infection. Red, swollen, tender and bleeding gums suggest periodontal disease.
Gingivitis and periodontitis can be avoided. Brush at least twice daily and floss daily. See a dentist twice a year for routine cleanings. Use fluoridated toothpaste and select soft-bristled toothbrushes that you replace every threee to four months. Eat a healthy diet and limit sugary foods. Do not smoke or use smokeless tobacco products. Accidental injury can only be prevented by wearing mouth guards while playing sports.
Gum disease can be reversed if caught early, however it should be treated to hold loose teeth from falling out . Deep cleaning beneath gumline, also known as scaling and root planing, effectively treats gingivitis and periodontitis. Antibiotics or surgery may be necessary in advanced cases. Loose teeth is usually strengthened with wire splints, which bind the loose tooth to more firmly rooted neighboring teeth. In the worst cases, the loose tooth must be extracted and a false tooth or implants are essential.