Broken Teeth Blog Entry

What Your Smile Says About Your Personal Health

Are you happy with your smile? Do you feel your smile represents who you are as a person? In social interactions, the mouth is one of the first body features other people notice. Make sure your smile represents you and accurately reflects your personal health.

 

Missing Teeth

The most common reasons for people to be missing teeth are dental decay and periodontal disease. Our modern diet contains refined carbohydrates, which when broken down, provide an energy source for bacteria in our mouth. If left unchecked, the unhealthy bacteria can dominate the oral environment and cause tooth decay or bone loss that leads to loose teeth. When your teeth decay or erode beyond the point of repair, or if bone loss progresses until teeth are extremely loose, treatment often requires removal of the affected teeth. Unfortunately, after we lose our baby teeth and develop our adult teeth, we do not get another chance at “growing” another set of teeth. Open spaces in the mouth due to missing teeth may not only reflect poor overall systemic health, but may also cause problems with the jaw and the ability to properly process food.

 

Chipped, Worn, and Broken Teeth

Teeth can also chip, wear down or break throughout your lifetime. Dental enamel is the hardest substance in the body, but it gets put to work! We expose our teeth to hot coffee, cold ice cream, acidic sodas and sports drinks, crunchy almonds and a variety of other challenging substances. In one year, we can chew up to one million times! This does not include teeth grinding. As people progress through life, teeth become more prone to chipping, wearing down, and breaking. These inevitable situations do not only occur in older teeth. Sometimes accidents happen. Crashing a bike, a baseball striking the mouth, slipping on ice, or even biting a popcorn kernel can lead to problems. When teeth chip, wear down, or break it can be painful. Preventive care can reinforce cracked teeth before they break. Accidents will happen, and fortunately there are treatment options available when the accidents occur!

 

Treating or Replacing Teeth

The good news is that there are a variety of treatment options for missing, chipped, worn, or broken teeth. Doctors have been treating and replacing teeth for thousands of years. In fact, archeologists have found ruins from the Etruscan civilization that show tooth replacements fabricated from bone or ivory tracing back to 700 BC! Luckily, with the constant progression of modern dentistry, there are treatment options that are structurally and cosmetically superior to bone or ivory. Typically, replacing missing teeth and treating broken, worn, or chipped teeth involves a few steps.

  1. Meet with your dentist for a consultation to plan and set functional and cosmetic goals that create a solution for your particular case. At Grant Davis and Gribble we have an in-house dental laboratory with a Certified Dental Lab Technician that can come to your room and provide professional chairside input on each individual case. This allows our dental team to provide you with a new smile, unique to yourself, based on color, shape, size and function.
  2. Decide what option best fits your case. Broken, worn, or chipped teeth can be treated with porcelain veneers, porcelain crowns, or a variety of other dental restorative materials. Missing teeth can be replaced with dental crowns, bridges, dental implants, or dentures. If you are looking for a cosmetic dentist in New Mexico, our modern practice of cosmetic dentistry incorporates cosmetic dental surgery, the current materials, and expertise to provide a treatment that suits your functional and aesthetic dental goals.
  3. Maintain your oral health. When you make the decision to take the steps towards improving your overall health, it is critical to maintain your health constantly. When you have dental treatment to replace or treat missing, chipped, worn, or broken teeth you must keep your mouth clean in order to insure the longevity of your dental treatment. Brush at least twice a day, floss frequently, use a mouth rinse, and see your dentist and hygienist for your regular check-ups.

Decisions, lifestyle choices, or accidents that resulted in missing, chipped, worn or broken teeth can be overcome with a commitment to your overall health. The body is a system and the mouth not only reflects and portrays your health and personality, it plays a vital role as the entry point to your entire body’s system. We wish you a healthy and happy smile and invite you to explore our website to watch animated videos that explain the treatment options listed above.

Author Info

Dr. Connor Hollowwa

Dr. Connor Hollowwa is an Albuquerque native. He graduated from the Albuquerque Academy and went on to receive a BA from Rice University. His Doctorate of Dental Surgery is from Creighton University School of Dentistry. Before joining private practice he practiced at the state-of-the-art Isleta Health Center’s Dental Clinic, providing modern dental care for the members of the Pueblo of Isleta. In his free time he enjoys playing the piano, fly-fishing, golfing, and skiing.