I'm an Adult — Can I Still Lose a Tooth?

Jul 04, 2023
I'm an Adult — Can I Still Lose a Tooth?
Unfortunately, the potential for tooth loss doesn’t disappear with adulthood. Read about the common causes of adult tooth loss, how to prevent it, and the solutions available for restoring your smile.

When we think about tooth loss, it's often associated with children losing their baby teeth. However, tooth loss can also affect adult smiles.

Our team at Beaufils Dental in Cooper City, Florida, specializes in family and cosmetic dentistry. One of our goals is to help you maintain a healthy smile from childhood through adulthood.

We’re happy to provide insight into adult tooth loss, how it happens, and what we can do to help.

Causes of tooth loss in adults

Adult tooth loss arises from a variety of causes, including:

Dental trauma

Accidents, sports injuries, or other forms of trauma can result in the loss of one or more teeth in adults. Tooth loss can occur due to a direct impact to the mouth, causing teeth to become dislodged or fractured beyond repair.

Periodontal disease

This condition, also known as gum disease, is a leading cause of tooth loss in adults. It occurs when gums become infected and inflamed, leading to the deterioration of the tissues and bone supporting your teeth. Over time, affected teeth may become loose and eventually fall out.

Untreated tooth decay

If left untreated, cavities can progress and cause extensive damage to the tooth structure. In severe cases, tooth decay can lead to tooth loss. Poor oral hygiene, a diet high in sugary foods and drinks, and neglecting regular dental checkups increase your risk of tooth decay.

Oral infections

Infections in the mouth, such as abscesses, can develop due to untreated tooth decay or gum disease. Extraction may be necessary to prevent further complications if the infection spreads to the tooth's root or the supporting bone.

Medical conditions and treatments

Certain medical conditions, such as osteoporosis, diabetes, and cancer, can increase the risk of tooth loss in adults. Additionally, some medications or treatments, like radiation therapy or certain medicines for osteoporosis, can affect dental health and lead to tooth loss.

Fortunately, routine dental checkups and preventive care, such as professional teeth cleanings, can protect your gum and tooth health. 

We also offer emergency dental services at Beaufils Dental to relieve pain and prevent tooth loss due to trauma or other issues whenever possible.

Implications of adult tooth loss

Tooth loss in adulthood can have significant physical and emotional implications. For instance, a missing tooth can cause surrounding teeth to shift, creating a crooked smile that may also affect gum health.

Other issues with adult tooth loss include:

Impaired chewing and digestion

Missing teeth can make it challenging to chew correctly, affecting the ability to enjoy a balanced diet and leading to digestive problems.

Speech difficulties

Teeth play a crucial role in how you speak. Tooth loss can result in difficulties pronouncing certain sounds, affecting speech clarity and confidence.

Self-esteem and social impact

Losing teeth can negatively impact an individual's self-esteem, causing embarrassment and social anxiety. That may lead to avoiding social situations and smiling less, affecting overall well-being and interpersonal relationships.

Solutions for adult tooth loss

Our overarching goal at Beaufils Dental is to maintain your natural smile whenever possible, but we do offer several outstanding solutions for missing teeth, including:

Dental implants

Considered the gold standard for tooth replacement, dental implants provide a long-lasting and natural-looking solution. Implants are artificial tooth roots surgically placed into the jawbone and topped with a dental crown, restoring the appearance and function of a natural tooth.


Removable dentures are an affordable and noninvasive option for adults missing multiple teeth or entire arches. They can be partial dentures (replacing some teeth) or complete dentures (replacing all teeth).

Dental bridges

Bridges are fixed prosthetic devices that replace missing teeth using neighboring teeth as support. They consist of artificial teeth attached to dental crowns placed on the adjacent teeth.

Dental bonding and veneers

For minor tooth loss or cosmetic issues, bonding or veneers can restore the appearance of your smile. These methods involve applying tooth-colored resin or porcelain shells to the affected teeth, improving aesthetics and function.

However, the best solution for adult tooth loss is to prevent it with routine dental exams, professional cleanings, and early intervention for cavities, thinning enamel, and gum disease.

Schedule your visit today by calling Beaufils Dental or requesting an appointment online.