Whether or not a loose tooth can be saved depends on several factors. These will include what is causing the problem, how long that it has been present, how mobile it is and how willing you are to hold on to your teeth (both in terms of getting treatment and paying for it). Read on for further advice.
Prognosis depends on the cause…
First up, the most common cause of mobility in teeth is severe gum disease (aka periodontal disease). Often, by the time the teeth become loose, the gum disease has progressed extensively. Whether or not treatment is possible will depend on how much gum tissue is left to hold the teeth in place. Get your dentist for a proper assessment, which would probably include x-rays to determine how much bone tissue is left.
Treatment for gum disease usually includes dental scaling with the dentist or hygienist, along with a lot of increased oral hygiene efforts from the patient. Also if you smoke, it is very important to give up, if you want to save your teeth. If routine scaling is not sufficient then gum surgery may be needed. Using a surgical approach makes cleaning the area easier and may mean that a tooth can be saved, were it otherwise may need extracted.
Other causes and their usual outcomes include:
- Infection. This typically will cause fairly sudden mobility along with other symptoms such as pain and swelling. Infections are often treatable (for example with root canal) if the tooth itself is the cause. But if gum disease is the cause the outlook is typically less favourable.if an infection can be cleared then the teeth should regain their stability.
- Grinding your teeth. This habit, often done at night, puts undue forces on the teeth. This in turn can make them lose. The prognosis is typically good the grinding stops for one wears a night guard to reduce the biting forces.
- Trauma. A knock to the mouth area can obviously damage the teeth. The amount of damage varies, but can lead to loss of teeth. Again, seek an emergency appointment with your dentist if you get a knock to the mouth.
…And on the severity of the problem
If a tooth is extremely loose, it is most likely that you lose it. The reason is that there is probably very little foundation left hold in it place. It is pretty much impossible to replace lost gum and bone. An exception to this is when a tooth is knocked and made loose. In this case said tooth may be salvageable if replaced and splinted for some time.
Conversely, if the problem is not severe, then the outcome is likely to be better. Note that teeth are naturally very slightly mobile, they’re not fixed to the bone. So the problem may not be as severe as you may think. Always get your dentist for a proper assessment and any early treatment if needed.
Finding out a definite answer to question such as the “can a tooth be saved” is impossible online. You really need to get your dentist. Delaying this often only makes the matter worse. In general terms, very loose teeth caused by gum disease are difficult to save. Prevention is key, so even if you have no problems always get regular checkups.
If you have any questions on this topic, use our contact page and the dentist will get back you.