The positions of your teeth are important for more than just a beautiful smile. They are essential for your oral health and functions. Over time, you might notice some movement of a tooth. Although it may not seem like anything more than an aesthetic issue, it can be a sign of a larger problem. It’s best to see your dentist right away to pinpoint the cause of your teeth shifting. They’ll create the customized plan you need to stabilize your teeth and straighten your smile.
1. Natural Age Process
As you age, the ligaments, fibers, and tissues in your body weaken, including those in your jaw. This can cause your teeth to loosen. In some cases, they may even shift out of position, which can cause changes to your bite or facial features. In time, you may also experience a variety issues, like worn enamel, TMJ disorders, or fractured teeth.
Depending on your specific needs, your dentist will create a personalized plan to preserve your teeth, like using Invisalign. The clear aligners will move them back into position to restore a healthy, beautiful smile.
2. Tooth Grinding
If you have a habit of grinding or clenching your teeth, the pressure can loosen them. Eventually, they may even fall out. Without treatment for bruxism, the friction can also alter the shape of your teeth from enamel erosion. This can lead to an unbalanced bite, which can cause them to shift.
Your dentist can stop them from moving with a nightguard. The custom-fit device provides a cushion between your upper and lower teeth to protect them from the grinding.
3. Tooth Loss
Every tooth is essential for a healthy smile. Even a single missing tooth increases your risk of several complications, like shifting teeth. Tooth loss causes your jawbone to deteriorate because it isn’t being stimulated by the root. Your adjacent teeth won’t have the support they need to stay in place, causing them to move from position.
Although there are several dental prosthetics available, only one is proven to stop bone loss. A dental implant is the only treatment to replicate the root and the crown to prevent dental drift and keep your jaw strong.
4. Gum Disease
Gum disease is a preventable infection in the gingival tissue that will destroy the supporting structures of the teeth if not treated. Your teeth may not have adequate support, so they move out of position. Without treatment, they may fall out.
Your dentist can stop the infection with periodontal therapy. After completing your treatment, they can focus on making your smile straight again, such as with porcelain veneers. In as few as 2 appointments, you’ll have a beautiful smile.
If your teeth are shifting, don’t ignore the issue. Contact your dentist right away to prevent them from moving.
About Dr. Joshua Kuykendall
Dr. Kuykendall earned his dental surgery degree at The University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry. He has pursued advanced training in many areas of specialty, including restorative and cosmetic dentistry. He can prevent your teeth from shifting and revitalize your smile. Contact our office today to schedule your consultation.