Collapse probably isn't a word you want to associate with your body. So, it's not great news when your dentist informs you that your teeth have deteriorated to the point where your bite has collapsed. But what does this actually mean? And is it possible to restore your bite?
The Loss of Vertical Dimension
Bite collapse is when your teeth have declined to a stage where they have lost a significant proportion of their vertical dimension. This, in turn, has (gradually) caused your jaw to reposition itself, as well as affecting the very look of your face, causing it to take on a sunken look while accentuating wrinkles. Because the problem started in your teeth, this is also where the solution must start.
Wear and Tear
Some deterioration of your teeth is unavoidable, but the problem can largely be bypassed with proper oral hygiene (both at home and with regular dental checkups). Deterioration can be due to wear and tear, and it can be accelerated by periodontal disease and decay. Restorative dentistry will seek to rebuild the affected teeth in your mouth in order to restore their vertical dimensions.
Rebuilding Your Teeth
This restoration work can involve rebuilding your teeth using direct composite bonding, which is essentially replacing the worn and missing sections of the teeth using a tooth-colored composite material. Alternatively, considerably deteriorated teeth can be restored using dental crowns. Dental veneers can also be utilized when the teeth are otherwise healthy, as veneers are largely cosmetic. However, they can assist in restoring the vertical dimension of a tooth.
A Dental Facelift
The cumulative effect of this restoration work is considered to be a dental facelift. Although no traditional cosmetic surgery has taken place, the restoration of your teeth has raised your bite, correctly repositioning your jaw. This will help to reverse the physical effects of bite collapse. Some people might wish to take this even further and receive dermal fillers, although this is entirely optional. You may want to wait for the effects of your dental facelift to become evident before considering an additional procedure.
It's crucial that you consider your need for extensive dental restoration as a warning sign. If your teeth were to decline to the same degree in the future, your bite may well collapse again. This will not only compromise your dental health again but will also affect your physical appearance. So when your bite collapse is corrected, you must do everything within your power to ensure that it remains corrected.
Reach out to a dentist like one at Pacific Ave Dental/Allan L. Hablutzel, DDS who provides restorative dental services.