There are many reasons why you might be experiencing jawbone deterioration. Here are a few of the most common:
When an adult tooth is removed and not replaced, jawbone deterioration may occur. Natural teeth are embedded in the jawbone, which is stimulated through activities such as chewing and biting.
When teeth are missing, the alveolar bone, or the portion of the jawbone that anchors the teeth in the mouth, no longer receives the necessary stimulation and begins to break down or resorb. The body no longer uses or “needs” the jawbone, so it deteriorates and goes away.
The rate the bone deteriorates and the amount of bone loss that occurs varies significantly among individuals. However, most loss occurs within the first eighteen months following the extraction and continues throughout life.
Periodontal diseases are ongoing gum infections that gradually destroy the support of your natural teeth. They affect one or more periodontal tissues:
While there are many diseases that affect the tooth-supporting structures, plaque-induced inflammatory lesions make up the majority of periodontal issues. They are divided into two categories:
While gingivitis, the least serious of the diseases, may never progress into periodontitis, it always precedes periodontitis. Dental plaque is the primary cause of gingivitis in genetically susceptible individuals.
Plaque is a sticky, colorless film composed primarily of food particles and various bacteria, which adhere to your teeth at and below the gum line. Plaque constantly forms on your teeth, even minutes after cleaning.
Bacteria found in plaque produce toxins or poisons that irritate the gums. Gums may become inflamed, red, swollen, and bleed easily. If this irritation is prolonged, the gums separate from the teeth, causing pockets (spaces) to form
If daily brushing and flossing are neglected, plaque can also harden into a rough, porous substance known as calculus (or tartar). This can occur both above and below the gum line.
Bone loss can occur whether you have anchored or unanchored dentures.
Unanchored dentures are placed on top of the gum line and therefore do not provide any direct stimulation to the underlying alveolar bone. Over time, the lack of stimulation causes the bone to resorb and deteriorate.
Eventually, the bone loss may become so severe that dentures cannot be held in place even with strong adhesives, and a new set may be required.
Some dentures are supported by anchors, which help adequately stimulate and preserve bone. With bridgework, the teeth on either side of the appliance provide sufficient stimulation to the bone, but the portion of the bridge that spans the gap where the teeth are missing receives no direct stimulation. Bone loss can occur in this area.
Proper denture care, repair, and refitting are essential for maintaining oral health. By completing a bone graft procedure, the Ferber Dental Group can restore bone function and form, halting the effects of poor denture care.
When a tooth is knocked out or broken to the extent that no biting surface is left below the gum line, bone stimulation stops. This results in jawbone loss.
A bone grafting procedure would be necessary to reverse the effects of bone deterioration, restoring function and promoting new bone growth in traumatized areas.
Misalignment issues can create a situation in the mouth where some teeth no longer have an opposing tooth. The unopposed tooth can over-erupt, causing deterioration of the underlying bone.
Issues such as TMJ problems, normal wear-and-tear, and lack of treatment can also create abnormal physical forces that interfere with the teeth’s ability to grind and chew properly. In areas where the bone is losing stimulation, bone deterioration will likely occur.
Osteomyelitis is a type of bacterial infection in the bone and bone marrow of the jaw. The infection leads to inflammation, which can cause a reduction of blood supply to the bone.
Treatment for osteomyelitis generally requires antibiotics and removal of the affected bone. A bone graft procedure may then be required to restore bone function and size lost during removal.
Benign facial tumors, though generally non-threatening, may grow large and require the removal of a portion of the jaw. Malignant mouth tumors almost always spread into the jaw, requiring the removal of a section of the jaw.
In both cases, reconstructive bone grafting is usually required to help restore function to the jaw. Grafting in patients with malignant tumors may be more challenging because treatment of the cancerous tumor generally requires the removal of surrounding soft tissue as well.
Some conditions or syndromes known as congenital disabilities are characterized by missing portions of the teeth, facial bones, jaw, or skull. Ferber Dental Group may be able to perform a bone graft procedure to restore bone function and form where it may be absent.
When molars are removed from the upper jaw, air pressure from the air cavity in the maxilla (maxillary sinus) causes resorption of the bone that formerly helped keep the teeth in place. As a result, the sinuses become enlarged, a condition called hyperpneumatized sinus.
This condition usually develops over several years and may result in insufficient bone for the placement of dental implants. Ferber Dental Group can perform a sinus lift procedure to treat the issue.
If so, Ferber Dental Group can help. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.