Tooth Loss And Jawbone Problems? Here's How You Improve Your Situation Now

If your lower jawbone is weak from losing teeth over the years, you may feel hopeless or discouraged about your situation. Your weakened jawbone and missing teeth can affect your ability to eat and how you look over time. If you don't do something to strengthen your jawbone or replace your lost teeth, your problems can become worse. Here are things you can do right now to improve your situation.

How Does Tooth and Bone Loss Affect You?

If you have problems chewing food because of the problems in your lower jawbone, your health can eventually suffer. The lower jawbone works very hard to break down tough meat and hard vegetables. But when you suffer from tooth loss, your jaw works harder to carry out its functions. The extra work can quickly wear down your jawbone.

Your lower jaw can lose some of its height and depth over time. The lower half of your face may gradually become less pronounced or stable. The skin on and around your chin, cheeks, and jawline can sag or loosen up as well. All of these cosmetic changes in your face could potentially affect your self-esteem or confidence. 

In addition, your teeth can gradually gravitate toward the empty sockets of your lost teeth. The shift in tooth position can also cause stress on your jaw. You might even experience discomfort in your teeth and jawbone from the shifting.

If you act now, you can prevent the problems above from drastically affecting your life.

How Can You Strengthen Your Jaw at Home?

You can take small steps to keep your lower jaw strong by eating plenty of calcium, vitamin D, and other bone-building nutrients. Calcium and vitamin D rebuild the cells in your bones, including your facial bones. Without sufficient nutrients, your jawbone can weaken further.

Your list should include:

  • Kale
  • White beans
  • Salmon
  • Sardines
  • Unsweetened oatmeal

Try to combine the foods above with other mineral-rich items during mealtime to see if anything changes in your jawbone. If changing your diet doesn't provide the results you seek, ask a dentist about dental implants.

How Can a Dentist Help?

Dental implants are permanent replacements for missing, damaged, or compromised teeth. The devices look, function, and work like real teeth. Dentists insert implant posts directly inside the jawbone and cover them with artificial teeth crowns. The placement allows the posts to bond with the natural tissues of your jawbone.

If a dentist finds your lower jaw too weak to support dental implants, they may perform a bone augmentation procedure to strengthen the bones in your jaw. There are different types of bone augmentation procedures available to you, including bone grafting. Bone grafting requires taking bone tissue from another part of the mouth or body and placing it in the jawbone. Over time, the tissue forms a strong bond with your jawbone. After the augmentation procedure, a dentist can insert your dental implants.

You might notice some positive changes in your jawbone after the procedures above. Your jawline might appear more streamlined, and your cheekbones might look higher or firmer. The skin around your mouth may also look smoother and tighter. 

Your ability to chew hard-textured food may also improve. If you experienced pain in your jaw or gums in the past, these problems may slowly go away. If you do have any other problems with your ability to eat, consult with a dentist right away. 

Living with tooth loss and jawbone problems isn't simple. But if you follow the right steps, you can overcome them. Contact a dental implant specialist at a dental office like Pittsburgh Dental Spa in your area for more details about the procedure.