All About Oral Bone Loss

Aug 20, 2021

Want to prevent oral bone loss from ruining your mouth? Read on to learn how about the causes of bone loss, and how we can help you keep your teeth, gums, and jaw healthy.

What Causes Oral Bone Loss?

Bone loss is a common consequence of loss of teeth and chronic periodontitis. In the case of periodontitis, the bacteria gradually eat away at the underlying jawbone and at the periodontal ligaments that connect the tooth to the bone.

However, the most common cause of bone loss is tooth loss left unreplaced, especially multiple teeth. Jawbone is preserved through the pressure and stimulus of chewing. When that is removed through tooth loss, the bone “resorbs” (reabsorbs) into the body. In the first year after tooth extraction, 25% of bone is lost, and this bone loss continues. This is why it is vital to get a dental implant after a tooth extraction.

Bone loss can also be caused by misaligned teeth, creating a situation where normal chewing doesn’t occur, causing loss of the needed stimulus to the bone.

Preventing Bone Loss

Bone loss can be prevented by giving the jawbone a replacement tooth with a root that can exert the same or similar pressure as natural teeth. This is done immediately after extraction by replacing single teeth with dental implants, or by using a fixed implant-supported bridge or denture.

A single-tooth implant or a dental bridge with three to four teeth supported by two implants provide a chewing power of 99% of natural bite force. A denture secured with dental implants provides about 70% to 80% of the normal biting force and helps considerably in preventing bone loss.

Obviously, the best way to reverse periodontitis is to prevent it from taking over in the first place. There are a few things that everyone can do to protect their teeth.

The first is that to brush twice a day for at least two minutes. Secondly, you should also floss at least once a day. Both of these things remove debris and bacteria from the mouth to keep it cleaner and prevent damage.

Every person should also be seeing a dental professional at least once a year. These appointments will give you an insight into the overall health of your teeth, gums, and mouth. If there is the potential for a problem, the dentist can point it out for you to focus on.

How We Can Help

When you schedule an appointment at 19th Avenue Dental Care, we will start with a comprehensive visual exam and x-rays. Part of the exam will also include periodontal charting. This is a way of measuring the space between a tooth and the gum tissue next to it. 

Unfortunately, we often see periodontal erosion and bone loss even in patients as young as in theirs 20s. While not age-related specifically, bone loss depends on pocket depth between teeth and gum, where the bone level is, and how much plaque has built up. 

On its own, oral bone loss cannot be reversed. Left untreated, the bone in your jaw and around your teeth will continue to resorb, leading to more tooth loss, disease, and pain. However, there is good news! In most cases, dental bone loss can be stopped. Our experienced dental team is here to support you and your oral health with regular cleanings, tooth extractions, and dental implants to keep you smiling brightly for years to come.