Bone loss around the teeth and in the jaws is much more common than you might think and can occur after tooth loss or, more commonly, as a result of “periodontal disease” or “gum disease.”
This disease is where bacteria found in dental plaque cause the bone that supports the teeth to be slowly eaten away.
Bone loss in the gums can affect people of all ages, even those with perfectly healthy teeth. However, it is more common as you get older.
We’ve created a helpful guide that summarizes everything you need to know about repairing bone loss in the gums.
WHAT IS DENTAL BONE LOSS?
Dental bone loss occurs when the bone that surrounds and supports your teeth shrinks as a result of disease or infection, causing the teeth to loosen, move, and spread.
Bone loss can also affect the underlying jawbone when a tooth is lost or needs to be extracted, which can cause both the jawbone and gums to shrink.
HOW DO YOU KNOW YOU HAVE BONE LOSS?
If your teeth begin to move, loosen, or your gums begin to shrink, swell, or bleed while brushing, you have gum disease and bone loss. It is very important that you seek professional advice and treatment right away, as you may eventually lose your teeth.
Common symptoms are gaps between teeth, bad breath, moving teeth, swollen or bleeding gums, or gum recession.
If you experience any of these symptoms, you should contact your dentist immediately.
CAUSES OF BONE LOSS IN THE CIRCLE OF THE TEETH
The most common causes of bone loss in the gums are tooth loss and periodontal disease. Another cause of bone loss around the teeth can be trauma, that is, damage caused by accidents, attacks.
However, one of the biggest factors affecting the susceptibility to periodontal disease or gum disease and bone loss in the gums is smoking. There is a wealth of real evidence conclusively showing that smoking not only increases susceptibility to gum disease and bone loss, but also significantly increases the amount of damage done by the disease. Smoking can also reduce the effectiveness of treatment.
Malnutrition and certain serious medical conditions can also increase susceptibility to bone loss.
HOW TO RECOVER A BONE LOSS TOOTH?
The good news is that there are several ways to save teeth with bone loss before they get to the point of losing your teeth all together. Proper periodontal treatment combined with good home oral hygiene (proper brushing, flossing, and interdental cleaning) can eradicate the disease and even regrow some of the bone loss.
The bone surrounding your teeth can be renewed through regenerative grafting to optimize bone support and hold your teeth in place. After you lose your teeth, bone can also be rebuilt to place dental implants to replace and restore missing or lost teeth.
HOW TO PREVENT BONE LOSS?
Prevention is always better than a cure! Good dental care and oral hygiene at home, proper tooth brushing (and the correct use of a good electric toothbrush), interdental cleaning with flossing and/or interdental brushes, a healthy diet and lifestyle, quitting or avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol stopping, all prevent gum recession.
Since most people don’t really know how to brush their teeth properly, it’s always a great idea to have your dentist, hygienist or other dental care professional show you the best way to take care of your teeth and gums.