What Are the Main Causes of Tooth Loss?

Wellspring Dental

Taking care of your oral health and seeing a dentist regularly are crucial in helping you maintain the longevity of your teeth. In fact, certain causes of tooth loss can actually be within your control and getting checkups and cleanings regularly can help you immensely. Although avoiding tooth loss is possible, it is important to remember there are still situations outside of your control, like natural aging, that can contribute to tooth loss.

But what are the main causes of tooth loss? Let’s explore five of the leading causes of tooth loss in adults.


Cavities are a very common cause for tooth loss in both children and adults. Without proper treatment by a dentist (i.e. fillings), cavities can cause permanent damage to your enamel and result in issues involving the pulp of your tooth. If they’re too bad, a root canal may need to be performed.

Gum Disease

In the United States, gum disease is the number one cause for adults to lose teeth. Gingivitis, the first phase of gum disease, occurs when bacteria accumulates on the surface of your teeth. This build-up causes your gums to become inflamed. When gingivitis is left untreated, harmful bacteria can build up between the tooth and gum which transforms into a more serious version of gum disease. Tooth loss is a common side effect once gingivitis progresses without treatment.

Physical Injuries

Injuries are, unfortunately, another common cause for tooth loss. Sports, outdoor activities and accidents can potentially contribute to the loss of a tooth. With that, it’s important to do what you can to protect yourself from physical injury. Such forms of protection can include wearing a mouth guard if you’re planning on playing a sport to prevent trauma to your mouth.

Certain Diseases

Did you know that diseases can also contribute to tooth loss or heighten your risk of losing teeth? Some of the top diseases that can impact your oral health and result in gum disease and/or tooth loss include: diabetes, eating disorders, arthritis and hypertension. 

Other Risk Factors

Certain lifestyle choices and behaviors are also a leading cause of tooth loss. For example, smoking, chewing and a poor diet can harm your oral health. So, it’s important to do what you can to decrease taking part in harmful habits and maintain a healthy lifestyle to help maintain the health of your smile.

If you have lost any of your teeth or if you’re concerned that you may be more susceptible to losing your teeth, it’s important to see a dentist regularly and do what you can to promote a healthy mouth. 

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