I have written many blogs about how bone levels in the mouth influence the long term health of teeth. Periodontal disease is the most common cause of tooth loss in the adult population. This is a chronic progressive disease that results in gum inflammation and bone loss – ultimately leading to loose teeth and tooth loss.

By providng a thorough periodontal care plan we can minimise the effects of bone loss and help patients keep their teeth healthier for much longer. This treatment is best performed regularly (every 4 to 6 months) by a hygienist.

For those teeth that have already become too loose or infected, we need to consider replacing them with a good alternative. At Infinity Dental Clinic we analyse these teeth using 3-d scanning and CBCT scans to help us fully understand the extent of the bone loss and the best solution for that patient’s tooth. In this case the patient presented with a very loose and infected upper left 1 central incisor. The other teeth were also affected by periodontal disease however, they were not loose…yet. We immediately started periodontal therapy for this patient to ensure he did not suffer the same level of dental problems with his other teeth. In the meantime, we carefully analysed his bone loss using a CBCT scan and 3-d digital scan.

It was evident that their was severe bone loss in the region of this loose tooth. Over a period of 3 months we removed the failing and infected tooth and immediately replaced with a cosmetic temporary tooth. At the same time, we removed all of the chronic infection associated with this tooth and placed a bone graft to increase the bone volume in this area of the mouth by upto 3 times what it was before. This enabled us to ‘reverse’ the receded gum line and improve the foundations necessary for a strong and healthy replacement tooth – in the form of a permanent dental implant. After a period of 3 months we replaced the temporary tooth with a permanent ceramic (zirconia) crown to fit perfectly into the ‘new’ bone and ‘new’ gum line that had been restored following the severe bone loss and gum recession associated with the preceding infected tooth.

Although this is only one tooth, the effect it has had on this patient is phenomenal. He can eat, speak and smile with confidence. He no longer has to worry about accidentally biting too hard and the fear of losing that wobbly tooth. He can continue to live his life without having to worry about his central incisor.

More importantly though is the patient’s ongoing periodontal maintenance plan – we are ensuring that we provide him with the best ongoing care to minimise further tooth loss. He could have lost a lot more teeth if we didn’t provide the periodontal therapy and if he doesn’t lose anymore teeth in his life then that surely has to be the biggest achievement for this patient’s lifelong dental care.

Thank you for reading

Mohsin Patel

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