Fifth Ave Perio

Improving Smiles

Common Causes of Tooth Loss

A smile is one of the first physical attributes that we notice when meeting someone. It can affect relationships with coworkers, managers, friends, and significant others. Here at Fifth Avenue Periodontics, our Manhattan cosmetic dentists and staff share a common goal: helping our patients achieve healthy and beautiful smiles. Our team of dentists offers our patients the most advanced dentistry treatments that are available today.

While tooth loss isn’t the most widespread dental issue in the United States, it is definitely more common than most people think. Knowing the causes of tooth loss could help prevent the dental problems that lead to tooth loss. In this blog post, we discuss the most common causes of tooth loss.

Poor Oral Hygiene

A person’s overall oral hygiene plays an important role in tooth loss prevention. Good oral hygiene practices at home, paired with routine visits to the dentist for professional examinations and cleanings, reduces the risk of developing the serious dental problems that result in tooth loss, including gum disease and cavities.

Gum Disease

When not treated in its early stages, gum disease can severely damage the gums and teeth; eventually it can lead to tooth loss. The most common cause of gum disease is insufficient dental care, but the condition can also be caused by the use of tobacco products, genetics, hormonal changes (such as those that result from puberty and pregnancy), stress, bruxism, and certain medical problems. In the early stage of gingivitis, patients experience symptoms such as red, swollen gums that bleed easily and bad breath. These symptoms get worse as gum disease progresses to its advanced stages, and additional symptoms present themselves, such as the gums detaching from the teeth and the teeth becoming loose.


When a cavity starts to forms, decay eats away at the outer layer of the tooth, the enamel. As the cavity gets worse, it reaches the dentin layer of the tooth. At this point, a cavity can be treated with a filling or a dental crown. If the cavity is not treated, the infection will reach the pulp, or nerve, of the tooth. At this point, the tooth requires root canal therapy to be saved. If the infection continues to spread in the pulp of the tooth, the tooth will fall out or need to be extracted.


Smoking has a detrimental affect on a person’s overall health, including their oral health. Not only do cigarettes discolor teeth, cause bad breath, and esophageal diseases, but smoking has been linked to gum disease, tooth decay, and tooth loss. We recommend that our patients discontinue the use of cigarettes and other tobacco products to improve their health.


Some patients lose one or more of their teeth as a result of trauma or injury. This can be the result of a fall, car accident, or assault. If the impact is strong enough, the tooth can become dislodged at the root. Athletes that participate in contact sports are often advised to wear mouth guards to prevent dental trauma.

No matter the cause, tooth loss can be a very sensitive issue for patients. At Fifth Avenue Periodontics, our Manhattan dental implant experts offer several tooth replacement options. If you or someone you know has lost one or more of their teeth, please contact our office as soon as possible; we will be happy to set you up with a consultation.

Stages of Gum Disease

Gum disease can range from a minor problem to a severe problem. It’s important that you brush your teeth regularly, floss every night, and meet with your dentist twice a year. Doing so will prevent major dental health issues from occurring. There are different stages of gum disease, and the earlier it can be caught and treated, the better. The team here at our Manhattan cosmetic dentistry practice would like to take a moment to look at these different stages of gum disease and what they entail. We’ll briefly go over some treatment options as well.

About Gum Disease and its Causes

Gum disease refers to the bacterial infection of the gums. Bacteria is normally found in the mouth and can cause bad breath and tooth decay. Should your gums be affected by the bacteria, major problems can ensue. Smoking, diabetes, poor nutrition, and other factors can contribute to gum disease as well. We’ll use the latest diagnostic techniques and equipment at our dental practice serving Midtown and the Upper East Side to identify gum disease during your visit.

Gingivitis and its Symptoms

The earliest stage of gum disease is known as gingivitis. Some of the common symptoms of gingivitis are as follows:

  • Swelling of the gums
  • Discoloration of the gums
  • Bleeding of the gums
  • Bad breath (halitosis)

Periodontitis and its Symptoms

A more severe stage of gum disease is periodontitis. This stage usually involves the following symptoms:

  • More severe swelling of the gums
  • Purple or red gums
  • Receding gums
  • Bad breath
  • Major bleeding of the gums
  • Strange taste in the mouth
  • Wiggling or loose teeth

Advanced Periodontitis and its Symptoms

If left untreated, periodontitis can progress to advanced periodontitis. This is the most severe form of gum disease and will require laser dentistry treatment options as well as many other soft tissue therapies. The symptoms of advanced periodontitis include all of the above symptoms as well as:

  • Tooth misalignment
  • Increased space between teeth
  • Exposure of tooth roots
  • Tooth loss

Treatment of Gum Disease

There are numerous treatments available for gum disease based on your needs. For gingivitis, usually root planning/root scaling is performed to remove bacteria from the gumline around the tooth root. Special medicated rinses are often provided as well to help manage the bacterial infection. For more advance treatment needs, laser therapies, surgeries, and grafting treatments may be used.

If you have lost a tooth or need a tooth extracted due to advanced periodontitis, then you may be eligible to get Manhattan dental implants. These artificial tooth roots can anchor a dental crown, a dental bridge, or a denture in place. This will be part of a full smile makeover and restorative dental care treatment.

Assessing Your Needs and Restoring Your Dental Health

As you can see, there are many options available to address your problems, whether you’re dealing with gingivitis or advanced periodontitis. Rest assured that we have comprehensive gum disease treatment and periodontal care services that will help restore the health and appearance of your smile.

Learn More Gum Disease Treatments and Dental Health

If you would like more information about gum disease and how it can be treated, be sure to contact our Midtown Manhattan cosmetic dentistry practice today. Our entire team looks forward to meeting you in person and addressing all of your unique needs for enhanced dental health and dental care.