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Loose Tooth

A tooth that wiggles or moves is a loose tooth.  It is natural for children to have loose baby teeth when their permanent adult teeth are growing.  However, a loose tooth in an adult is not natural or normal, and it indicates an existing problem.

What causes a loose tooth?

A loose tooth can be caused by the loss of bone around the tooth, a broken root of the tooth, or a widening space between the root and the bone that the tooth sits on.

Who is at high risk for a loose tooth?

Some people are more vulnerable to having loose teeth than others.  Here are the people at a higher risk for developing loose teeth:

  • Advanced periodontal disease
  • A misaligned incorrect bite
  • Excessive bite forces
  • Traumatic injuries to teeth
  • Infections around teeth

What can I do to reduce my risk of developing loose teeth?

Your dentist will make recommendations to manage the specific risk factors that apply to you.  Here are a few recommendations:

  • Periodontal management procedures
  • Equilibrating or balancing your bite
  • Wearing a night guard
  • Wearing a sports mouthguard
  • Treating any infections associated with your teeth

What will happen if I choose to ignore my loose tooth?

Most often, a loose tooth will become progressively looser and will eventually fall out.  This process is frequently accompanied by pain and infection.

This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.