By Rafael Mercado, DDS on January 07, 2019
According to the American College of Prosthodontists (ACP), 178 million Americans are missing at least one tooth. In addition, roughly 40 million people in the United States are missing all of their teeth. These numbers are expected to increase over the course of the next two decades. Thankfully, our Castle Hills, TX dentistry practice offers different dental procedures to treat varying degrees of tooth loss.
Dr. Rafael Mercado would like to go over some other telling numbers about tooth loss. If you are missing teeth, we can go over some treatment options with you during a consultation at Castle Hills Family Dental.
Causes of Missing Teeth
Tooth loss is usually caused by cavities and tooth decay, which is to be expected. A 2012 study published in the International Journal of Dentistry examined tooth extractions in a sample clinic in Brazil. Even though the country is different, the numbers are telling:
- Cavities – 38.4 percent
- Periodontal Disease – 32.3 percent
- Eruption Problems – 6.4 percent
- Orthodontics – 5.7 percent
- Prosthetics – 3.6 percent
- Injury/Trauma – 2.6 percent
- Occlusal Problems – 1.1. percent
- Other – 9.9 percent
Age and Tooth Loss
Age plays such a major factor in tooth loss. Long-term wear and tear to the teeth and gums will eventually lead to the loss of a tooth or multiple teeth. The ACP estimates that 30 percent of adults between the ages of 65 and 74 have no teeth at all.
The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) noted the following average number of remaining teeth by age group:
- Total Number of Teeth – 28 (not counting wisdom teeth)
- Age 20 to 34 – 26.9 teeth remaining
- Age 35 to 49 – 25 teeth remaining
- Age 50 to 64 – 22.3 teeth remaining
Links Between Smoking and Missing Teeth
The ACP cites a connection between smoking and missing teeth. People who use tobacco products are three times more likely to suffer from periodontal disease than non-smokers. Given how gum disease is a major contributing factor to tooth loss, the risks of experiencing tooth loss in life is greater if you smoke.
These ACP numbers are echoed in findings from the NIDCR. Here are the average number of remaining teeth based on smoking history:
- Current Smoker – 23.4
- Former Smoker – 25.1
- Non-Smoker – 25.6
If you smoke, remember that there are plenty of options if you are looking to quit. Quitting tobacco products can help prevent tooth loss later in life.
Treatment Options for Tooth Loss
There are plenty of options out there for tooth loss. Let’s briefly consider some numbers on common treatments.
- Dental Bridges – Bridges help span the gap left behind by a single missing tooth or a small number of adjacent missing teeth. An estimated 15 million Americans have a crown and bridge appliance in place.
- Full and Partial Dentures – Dentures are ideal for people who are missing many teeth or all of their teeth. An estimated 90 percent of people missing all of their teeth have dentures.
- Dental Implants – Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that support dental appliances such as bridges, crowns, and dentures. An estimated 3 million Americans have dental implants, and that number is growing.
Learn More About Missing Teeth
For more information about treating tooth loss and helping you have a healthy smile again, be sure to contact an experienced cosmetic and restorative dentist. The team at Castle Hills Family Dental is here to help. You can reach our office by phone at (210) 405-1257.