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from the Academy of General Dentistry

Wednesday, March 3, 2021
Know Your Teeth Academy of General Dentistry Know Your Teeth


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What Is Tooth Loss?

Chapter: What Causes Tooth Loss?

  • Poor oral hygiene habits: If you do not brush and floss daily, decay and gum disease can set in, making tooth loss more likely to happen.
  • Poor nutrition: Foods and beverages that are high in sugar, carbohydrates and acid content can sometimes cause irreversible damage to the teeth and gums that lead to tooth loss.  Other habits, such as smoking or chewing tobacco, can damage teeth to the point of tooth loss. 
  • Lack of education about tooth loss: Many people incorrectly assume that tooth loss is inevitable due to age, genetics or family history.  A lack of education about the causes and consequences of tooth loss prevents people from taking preventative measures. 
  • Fear: Many people are afraid to visit the dentist, even if they know they have a problem.  Not addressing decay or other serious conditions can prolong the problem and eventually lead to the loss of teeth. 
  • Finances: Some people place dentist visits low on their list of priorities because they assume that dental care is too expensive.  Prolonging visits to the dentist can increase the chances that serious problems will develop. 
  • Trauma: Babies and young children are most susceptible to losing teeth prematurely due to trauma, mainly because their roots and gums are still developing.  Not taking the proper steps to respond to the injury can affect the child's oral health permanently. 

Reviewed: January 2012