Primary Causes of Tooth Loss

smiling woman man looking onNearly half of all American adults aged between 20 and 64 have lost at least one of their teeth, reports the CDC. Losing one or multiple permanent teeth comes with a host of unpleasant consequences which extend far beyond your appearance. Food choices are suddenly limited; you may have difficulty enunciating certain words, confidence levels decline, and in more severe cases, the face will take on a hollower, sagging appearance as underlying bone structure is compromised.

While losing baby “milk” teeth is perfectly normal, losing your permanent adult teeth is not. Here at Chelsea Dental Aesthetics, we understand the physical and emotional burdens experienced by tooth loss patients. Fortunately, even the most challenging of cases can benefit from modern advances in implant dentistry.

Tooth loss causes

According to a study in the Journal of Periodontology, older males who have diabetes, untreated hypertension and are smokers are at a higher risk of tooth loss caused by periodontal disease. Poor dental care and lack of routine cleanings were cited in many of the participants. In most cases, the back teeth or molars are the first teeth to go, usually from decay, structural damage or a failed root canal.

Other causes of tooth loss in adults include:

  1. Poor oral hygiene – One of the easiest ways to maintain a mouthful of strong, healthy teeth is to practice good brushing and flossing habits. When you skip this important step, acid-producing bacteria begin to eat away at the tooth’s enamel, causing cavities. Without regular flossing to remove debris between the teeth, gums may become red and inflamed with gingivitis, a pre-cursor to full-blown gum disease – the leading cause of tooth loss.
  2. Periodontal disease – develops once bacteria has infected gum tissue causing widespread inflammation to the ligaments and support structures in the jaw bone. At its most advanced state, periodontitis causes teeth to loosen and fall out.
  3. Trauma – A direct blow to the jaw or teeth can create lasting damage and tooth loss. Blunt trauma, whether in a car accident or sporting mishap, can knock out several teeth at once or cause root fracture, the effects of which may not be immediately evident.
  4. Untreated cavities – Professional dental cleanings will eliminate built-up plaque and calculus, thereby reducing the risk of decay and cavities. Cavities that are not treated with proper dental restorations can eventually worsen, leading to tooth loss.
  5. Lifestyle habits – such as drinking and smoking are associated with a higher risk of tooth loss.
  6. Systemic diseases – such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes

Barring traumatic injury, tooth loss is almost entirely preventable with good oral hygiene, dental checkups every six months and a healthy lifestyle.

Adults who have already lost teeth (along with self-confidence) can regain a beautiful smile with custom-made tooth root replacements that look and function just like natural teeth. Compared to removable dentures, dental implants offer better aesthetics, function and durability, without the hassle of messy adhesives.

Implant dentistry in NYC

Schedule a private consultation with NYC cosmetic dentist Dr. David Blaustein and learn more about implant dentistry advancements that can transform your smile. Ask about our flexible financing options for dental implants in New York. Call 347-774-4015 or complete the online contact form!


  1. WebMD, 9 Risk Factors for Tooth Loss
  2. Colgate, The Many Causes Of Loose Teeth
  3. Academy of Osseointegration, Common Causes of Tooth Loss

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