Oral and dental health easily ranks among the most important areas of your overall health you need to constantly monitor and care for. And yet, oral health is often neglected, both because of an aversion to seeing the dentist and because of the seeming tediousness of upholding good home oral hygiene practices on a continual basis.
Gum disease comes in 4 distinct stages of progression, beginning as gingivitis and culminating in advanced periodontitis. At first, its symptoms are mild and fully reversible. But left unchecked, it can lead to deterioration of gum and bone tissue, tooth loss, and infection/inflammations spreading from the mouth to other parts of the body.
In decades gone by, there were relatively few options when it came to tooth restoration. There were bridges and dentures, and if you needed dentures, they were full or partial - and that was about it.
Some half a million US adults get one or more dental implants installed every single year. And that number is growing steadily as more and more dental patients realize the value of implants as compared to other options like dentures and bridges.
It's always preferable to retain your natural teeth if at all possible. And the next option is generally a root canal. But there are also dental situations where an extraction will become necessary.