The Painful Truth: The Causes and Effects of Tooth Loss on Your Oral and Overall Health

Tooth loss is a common dental problem that affects people of all ages. It occurs when one or more teeth are lost due to various reasons. While some causes of tooth loss are preventable, others are not. This article explores the causes and effects of tooth loss.

Causes of Tooth Loss

1. Gum Disease

Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss. It is a bacterial infection that affects the gums and the bone that supports the teeth. Gum disease starts as gingivitis, which is a mild form of gum disease characterized by red, swollen, and bleeding gums. If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, a severe gum disease that can cause tooth loss.

Periodontitis occurs when the bacteria in the mouth form plaque, a sticky film that builds up on the teeth and gum line. Over time, the plaque hardens into tartar, which a dentist can only remove. Tartar irritates the gums and causes them to pull away from the teeth, creating pockets that harbor bacteria. The bacteria then attack the bone that supports the teeth, causing it to break down. When the bone is destroyed, the teeth become loose and may eventually fall out.

2. Tooth Decay

Tooth decay is another common cause of tooth loss. It occurs when the bacteria in the mouth form acids that eat away at the tooth enamel, the hard outer layer of the tooth. Tooth decay can cause cavities, which are holes in the teeth. If left untreated, cavities can progress to the pulp of the tooth, which contains nerves and blood vessels. When the pulp becomes infected, it can cause a painful abscess, leading to tooth loss.

3. Trauma

Trauma to the teeth can also cause tooth loss. It can occur due to sports injuries, falls, car accidents, or other types of accidents. Trauma can cause the teeth to fracture, become loose, or fall out completely.

4. Genetics

Genetics can also play a role in tooth loss. Some people are born with weaker teeth or a predisposition to gum disease. These factors can increase the risk of tooth loss.

5. Smoking

Smoking is another factor that can increase the risk of tooth loss. It can cause gum disease, tooth decay, and other oral health problems that can lead to tooth loss. Smoking can also interfere with the healing process after dental procedures, making it harder for the gums to heal and for the teeth to stay in place.

Effects of Tooth Loss

1. Difficulty Eating and Speaking

Tooth loss can make it difficult to eat certain foods and speak clearly. Missing teeth can make it hard to chew food, especially tough or crunchy foods. This can lead to poor nutrition and digestive problems. Tooth loss can also cause speech problems, especially if the missing teeth are in the front of the mouth.

2. Shifted Teeth

When a tooth is lost, the surrounding teeth can shift out of place. This can cause bite problems and lead to further tooth loss. Misaligned teeth can also be harder to clean, increasing the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

3. Jawbone Loss

The jawbone relies on the pressure of the teeth to maintain its density and shape. When a tooth is lost, the bone in that area no longer receives pressure and can start to shrink. Over time, this can lead to jawbone loss, which can cause changes in the facial structure and make it difficult to wear dentures or dental implants.

4. Self-Esteem Issues

Tooth loss can also have a psychological impact on a person’s self-esteem. Missing teeth can affect a person’s appearance and make them feel self-conscious or embarrassed. This can lead to social anxiety and isolation, as well as a decrease in confidence and overall well-being.


Tooth loss can have several causes, including gum disease, tooth decay, trauma, genetics, and smoking. It can have significant effects on a person’s oral and overall health, including difficulty eating and speaking, shifted teeth, jawbone loss, and self-esteem issues. Preventative measures, such as practicing good oral hygiene, visiting the dentist regularly, and avoiding smoking, can reduce the risk of tooth loss. Prompt treatment of dental issues, such as gum disease and tooth decay, can also prevent tooth loss. If tooth loss does occur, there are several options for replacement, including dental implants, dentures, and bridges. It’s essential to seek dental care promptly and to maintain good oral health to prevent and manage tooth loss effectively.

Why is it important to have good dental hygiene? 

Why is it important to have good dental hygiene?

Having good dental hygiene is important for several reasons:

  1. Prevent Tooth Decay and Gum Disease: Brushing and flossing regularly can remove plaque and bacteria from your teeth and gums, reducing the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
  2. Maintain a Bright Smile: Good dental hygiene helps keep your teeth clean and free from discoloration, giving you a brighter smile.
  3. Fresher Breath: Regular brushing and flossing can help eliminate bad breath caused by bacteria and food particles trapped in your mouth.
  4. Prevent Tooth Loss: Gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss in adults, and good dental hygiene can help prevent it.
  5. Protect Overall Health: Poor dental hygiene has been linked to several serious health problems, including heart disease, stroke, and respiratory infections. By taking care of your teeth and gums, you can reduce your risk of these and other health problems.

Therefore, it is crucial to adopt good dental hygiene practices such as brushing your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, flossing daily, and visiting your dentist regularly to ensure your teeth and gums are healthy and protected.

What’s the best method for brushing your teeth?

Here are some tips for the best method of brushing your teeth:

  1. Brush twice a day: Brush your teeth at least twice a day, in the morning and before bed.
  2. Use a fluoride toothpaste: Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride, which helps to prevent tooth decay and strengthen tooth enamel.
  3. Brush for two minutes: Brush your teeth for at least two minutes, making sure to cover all surfaces of your teeth, including the fronts, backs, and tops.
  4. Use the right technique: Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle to your gums and use gentle circular motions to brush each tooth. Use the tip of the brush to clean the inside surfaces of your front teeth, using a gentle up-and-down stroke. Brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath.
  5. Replace your brush: Replace your toothbrush every three to four months, or sooner if the bristles become frayed.

By following these steps and brushing your teeth correctly, you can help remove plaque and prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems. Additionally, it’s important to floss daily and visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and checkups.

What’s the best method for flossing teeth?

Here are some tips for the best method of flossing your teeth:

  1. Floss daily: Floss at least once a day, preferably before brushing your teeth at night.
  2. Use enough floss: Use about 18 inches of floss, winding most of it around the middle fingers of both hands and holding it tightly between your thumbs and index fingers.
  3. Guide the floss: Gently guide the floss between your teeth using a back-and-forth motion, being careful not to snap the floss against your gums.
  4. Curve the floss: Once the floss reaches the gumline, curve it into a C shape against one tooth and gently slide it into the space between the gum and the tooth.
  5. Repeat the process: Repeat this process for each tooth, using a clean section of floss as you move from tooth to tooth.
  6. Don’t forget the back of your last molars: Make sure to floss the back of your last molars, which can be more difficult to reach but are just as important to clean.

By following these steps and flossing regularly, you can remove plaque and food particles from between your teeth, which brushing alone cannot reach, helping to prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems.

Are electric toothbrushes a good option?

Yes, electric toothbrushes can be a good option for many people. There are several benefits to using an electric toothbrush over a manual toothbrush:

  1. More Effective Cleaning: Electric toothbrushes can be more effective at removing plaque and food particles from your teeth, due to their oscillating or rotating brush head and faster brushing speed.
  2. Improved Oral Health: Studies have shown that using an electric toothbrush can help reduce the risk of gingivitis and gum disease, as well as prevent cavities and tooth decay.
  3. Ease of Use: Electric toothbrushes can be easier to use for some people, especially those with limited mobility or dexterity. They also have timers built in, which can help ensure that you brush for the recommended two minutes.
  4. Variety of Options: Electric toothbrushes come in a range of styles, with different brush heads, speed and pressure settings, and other features, allowing you to choose the one that best suits your needs.

That being said, manual toothbrushes can also be effective when used properly with good brushing technique, and the most important factor in maintaining good oral health is regular brushing and flossing, regardless of the type of toothbrush you use.

In conclusion, electric toothbrushes can be a great option for many people, but the best toothbrush for you depends on your personal preferences and needs. If you’re considering switching to an electric toothbrush, talk to your dentist to find out which type and features might be best for you.

Our takeaway for good dental hygiene?

To summarize, here are the key takeaways for good dental hygiene:

  1. Brush your teeth twice a day: Brush your teeth at least twice a day, in the morning and before bed, using fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush.
  2. Floss daily: Floss at least once a day, using enough floss to reach all areas of your mouth.
  3. Use mouthwash: Consider using an antiseptic mouthwash to help kill bacteria and freshen your breath.
  4. Visit your dentist regularly: Visit your dentist every six months for a routine cleaning and checkup, or more often if recommended by your dentist.
  5. Avoid harmful substances: Limit your intake of sugary foods and drinks, and avoid using tobacco products, as they can damage your teeth and gums.

By following these guidelines, you can help maintain good oral health and prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems. Good dental hygiene is an important part of maintaining overall health, and it’s never too late to start taking care of your teeth and gums.

Finding the Best Dentist in Austin, TX

With so many dentists in the Austin, TX, area, how does one choose the right one for themselves or their family?

After all, dental clinics tend to come and go with some frequency. There are always people who need dental work, but it’s easy for too many offices to open up in an area. This high rate of turnover means it’s difficult for would-be patients to find a dentist they can trust, who will do the work well and remain in business for years to come.

Here at Modern Family Dentistry in Austin, we believe we have the right combination of skills and services to become your family dentist. It’s just a matter of looking at the qualifications…

Key Areas to Consider When Selecting an Austin, TX, Dentist

  1. Longevity

It’s a little unfortunate to say, but if you’re going to a dentist who has only been in business for a year or two, you’re taking something of a risk. A dental clinic needs years of experience to demonstrate that it can stay in business, providing great service for every patient.

We’ve been practicing in the Austin area for over fifteen years. We’re not going anywhere.

  1. A Full Selection of Services

Dentistry is a fast-changing field, especially cosmetic dentistry.  A good dentist must keep up with the latest techniques and technology, and be able to incorporate them into their own practice. Otherwise, they’ll fall behind and be unable to offer the best services to patients.

At Modern Family Dentistry, we offer the most current options in dental work, including high-tech veneers and laminates, Invisalign braces alternatives, and implant-based bridges\dentures.

  1. Skilled Staff

How long have the primary doctors of dentistry been practicing? Again, if they’re straight out of school, it’s a bit of a gamble – even if their prices are low to compensate. Likewise, look at their support staff. Are they hiring Dental Assistants and Hygienists with a real track record of success?

  1. Testimonials and Accolades 

The more positive patient reviews a dental clinic has, the better. Having a long list of patients giving five-star reviews, and recommendations to their friends, demonstrates they really know how to keep patients happy.

If the dental practice has industry awards as well, that’s even better. Our primary dentists at Modern Family Dentistry – Dr. Maggie and Dr. Benjamin Sharfae – have been covered by Dentist Inc., and voted among the top dentists in Austin!

Modern Family Dentistry

So whether you just need a routine cleaning, or extensive cosmetic dental work, give us a call at Modern Family Dentistry.  Our excellent staff and long record of success guarantee you’ll be happy with the results!  Click here to contact us.

What is Considered to be Cosmetic Dentistry?

Cosmetic dentistry” is a somewhat misunderstood term, as it’s a relatively new field of dentistry. We often get questions about what differentiates it from regular dentistry, so we wanted to take a minute to talk about the differences, and give some examples of cosmetic dentistry procedures.

What Constitutes Cosmetic Dentistry?

Traditional dentistry is a medical practice, aimed at reducing or preventing a number of diseases of the mouth, teeth, and gums. If left unchecked, these diseases can sometimes lead to much more severe health issues, as well as potentially reduce a person’s ability to eat normally.

On the other hand, cosmetic dentistry is almost solely concerned with improving the quality of a person’s smile and teeth. There might not be any disease directly involved, just physical problems such as cracked or missing teeth. A better smile can help improve a person’s quality of life in numerous ways, from social situations to business interactions.

Another difference is that cosmetic dentistry is often -although not always- considered an elective procedure. This means that some dental insurance plans may not cover cosmetic treatments, or have lower coverage. However, this varies considerably from one insurance plan to the next, and can also be affected by the dentist’s own evaluation of the necessity of the work.

Common Types of Cosmetic Dentistry

Virtually all cosmetic treatments are intended to make a person’s mouth look better. Some of the most frequent types include:

  • Teeth Whitening: This is the most common kind of cosmetic dentistry. It thoroughly removes stains, turning yellowed teeth a brilliant white again.
  • Dental Implants: When a patient is missing teeth, implanted false teeth can allow them to regain all normal chewing ability while looking natural to those looking at their teeth.
  • Composite Bonding: Composites are used to “patch” small areas of teeth, such as cracks or discolored areas. The composites are bonded to natural teeth and become part of them.
  • Dental Veneers: Somewhat like wood veneers, these are coatings that are bonded to the teeth with adhesive, covering up cracks, holes, or stains.  Veneers are nearly indistinguishable from natural teeth.
  • Inlays: Inlays are a form of filling, which are added to teeth with large cracks or holes. They can slow down tooth decay while looking much more natural than metal fillings.

Modern Family Dentistry in Austin Can Fix Your Smile

Dr. Maggie and Dr. Benjamin Sharfae both have over fifteen years of experience bringing the best in modern dentistry to people across the Austin area.  From traditional cleanings to extensive reconstructive work, Modern Family Dentistry is committed to safe effective, and gentle dentistry for every patient.

For more information or appointment scheduling, contact us today!

3 Reasons You Shouldn’t Ignore Dental Care

When was the last time you went in for a dental checkup? If you are like most people, you might be used to putting off regular dental care, especially if you struggle with dental related anxiety. However, since your oral health is tied to your overall wellness, dental care is crucial to keeping you healthy and strong.

Here are three reasons you shouldn’t ignore dental care, and what might happen if you do:

It Prevents Pain

One of the biggest reasons to stay on top of dental care is to stay comfortable. By going in for regular dental checkups, your dentist can find and address small dental issues early, before they progress into more painful dental problems.

Periodontal Disease Is Tied to Dangerous Ailments

Most people don’t realize it, but periodontal disease has been tied to dangerous health conditions, including cardiovascular problems, diabetes, respiratory disease, and even some forms of cancer. By keeping your teeth clean and healthy, you can keep levels of oral bacteria in check, reducing systemic inflammation and helping you to stay healthier.

Preventive Care Saves Time and Money

In addition to protecting your health, preventive dental care also helps you to save time and money. Because small dental problems are typically considered basic dental care, most insurance companies cover repairs under the umbrella of preventive services. Simple repairs are also easier for dentists to tackle, saving you time in the dental chair.

Are you due for a dental checkup? Contact  Us to schedule an appointment. In addition to handling preventive dental care, we also offer cosmetic and emergency dental services. For more information about the practice or to schedule an appointment, schedule an appointment or call 512-301-9002.


First seen on NearSay

Top Three Reasons Why You Need Regular Dental Care

A significant percentage of the American population is either unaware of the value of regular dental care, or doesn’t have access to dental services. In 2008, according to the National Academies, 4.6 million children weren’t able to obtain dental care because of the high costs. In 2011-2012, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 27.4% of adults with ages 20-44 have untreated dental caries, while in 2013, 61.7% of adults with ages 18-64 were able to visit a dentist in the previous year.

Apparently, millions of Americans need to realize the importance of dental care. Here are the top three reasons why you need to see the dentist on a regular basis:

  • Prevent gum disease – Brushing alone is not enough to keep your gums healthy. If there are no regular check ups, dental cleanings, and daily flossing, you may acquire gum disease. It is an infection in the gum tissues, which keep and hold your teeth in place. You wouldn’t know if you gum disease or not unless you consult your dentist.
  • Maintain good oral and physical health – Regular check up with your dentist will help you maintain good oral health. The dentist will help you go back to proper oral hygiene whenever you are falling off the track. Maintaining good oral health will reduce your risks of heart attacks and strokes. There are recent studies that link poor oral health to heart diseases.
  • Prevent oral cancer – It is alarming that people die daily because of oral cancer. The Oral Cancer Foundation said that one person dies every hour daily. Early diagnosis is important to cure the cancer. Whenever you visit the dentist for dental cleaning, he is also screening your mouth for oral cancer.

Certainly, there are economic, structural and other factors that affect how people value and access dental care. But at the end of the day, it is you who has the power to decide whether you want to have good dental care or not. There are many ways to have that beautiful and healthy smile.

If you are looking for a great dentist in the Austin area give us a call at Austin Modern Dentistry.

How to Get the Best Teeth Whitening, and Why It Matters

A healthy smile doesn’t have to be pearly white, but a white smile goes a long way towards improving self-confidence and comfort during social situations. Getting the best teeth whitening in Austin is as simple as following a few at-home tips and discussing your options with a trusted family dentist, such as those at Modern Family Dentistry.

Why is Teeth Whitening Important?

Many people believe that teeth whitening is simply a cosmetic procedure; however, having a healthy white smile can positively affect your overall health and well being in surprising ways; such as:

  • Improved employment chances
  • Positive social interactions
  • Lower stress and reduced stress-related illnesses
  • Improved moods

The biggest benefit to experiencing the best teeth whitening in Austin is the almost instant boost in self confidence.

Improve Your Results Before Your Procedure

Having your teeth whitened in the office often produces several shades difference. To help boost your results, there are a couple of things you can do before your teeth whitening appointment. Maintaining proper oral hygiene will go a long way towards improving your teeth whitening results. You should also avoid foods and beverages that are known to cause staining, such as wine and coffee.

Discuss Options with Your Dentist

There are multiple methods of teeth whitening, some are done at home, while others occur in the office. Speak with your dentist about what options might be right for you. Factors that may influence the type of whitening may include:

  • Depth of stains
  • Sensitives
  • Overall oral health
  • Whitening goals

Ensure Lasting Results

Most often, office whitening procedures allow you to walk out with whiter, brighter teeth. To maintain your results, it is important to follow your dentist’s after treatment instructions. Continue to avoid foods that may stain as your teeth, since they will be more susceptible to new stains for the first few days. It’s best to avoid highly acidic, sugared, and very cold and hot foods as well because the whitening process can leave your teeth temporarily extra sensitive.

Kicking certain habits altogether can make a big impact on how soon you will need to undergo teeth whitening again. To prolong your results, avoid:

  • Smoking
  • Coffee, tea, dark sodas
  • Red wine, dark beer, and dark liquor
  • Acidic juices
  • Lipstick (use non-smudging lipstick instead)

Using products designed to maintain a beautiful smile can also prolong your results and reduce any lingering sensitives. Talk to your dentist for product recommendations to ensure the best teeth whitening in Austin.

For more information about the importance of a healthy white smile, or to schedule a consultation in the Austin and surrounding areas, please contact the experts at Modern Family Dentistry today.

Should You Choose Fixed Dental Implant Bridge or Implant Dentures in Austin TX?

For too many years, there were very few good solutions for people who were missing multiple teeth and wanted to restore their smile. The typical solution was removable partial or full dentures, but these have numerous quality-of-life issues for the wearer:

  • They are often very large and cover much of the upper palette, which can cause a gagging sensation.
  • They’re prone to shrinkage over time and often require many trips to the dentist over the years for new denture sets.
  • Suction or glue-based support is unreliable, and can result in the dentures popping loose at awkward moments.
  • They have to be constantly removed and cleaned separately, which many find to be an uncomfortable or “gross” process.

The good news is that there are now other options for bridges or dentures in Austin, TX – ones based on implant technologies. These can provide most or all of the benefits of traditional dentures, but without the major drawbacks.

Comparing Implant Bridges vs. Dentures in Austin, TX

Implant Bridges

Traditionally, bridges were used when a patient was missing one or two teeth, but had relatively strong and solid teeth on either side of the gap. A removable bridge containing replacement teeth was fashioned and then anchored to those solid teeth. Besides having to be periodically removed for cleaning, the issue here is that if those anchor teeth degraded, the bridge became useless.

Implant bridges rely on studs implanted directly into the patient’s jaw, creating a stable anchor for the bridge. This allows them to remain in place for longer, with much less chance of popping loose.

Implant Dentures

When the patient is missing most or all of their teeth, implant dentures become a potential option. A series of studs are implanted in their mouth, which the dentures then hook onto directly.  In some cases, these dentures can be cleaned like regular teeth, with far less need to remove them.

Implant dentures are more stable, less prone to shrinkage, and are also much smaller than traditional dentures.

The Downside to Implants?

Implants aren’t a quick-fix solution. They require extensive surgical work on the jaw to implant the anchor studs, meaning it takes time and -yes- some pain to do properly. The end result is terrific, but not all patients are willing to go through the process necessary to install them.

If you are missing teeth, you have options! Your first step is to contact the experts at Modern Family Dentistry in Austin, TX, for a full evaluation of your dental situation.  We can talk you through the options, and help you make the right choice.

Click here to schedule an appointment today!

Video Testimonial From Kristofor


Hi I have been a patient of Dr. Maggie and Dr. Benj for five or six years. When I was younger I used to have nice perfect teeth, but I  grind them at night and the past two years I have been in a program with braces to straighten the teeth and I have verniers in the front and these guys have been fantastic. This has been the best experience dental wise that I have ever had ever had super happy never have to wait for treatment their always on time, appointments are made just a great team. Thanks guys

Video Testimonial From Julie

Caption Text

I have been seeing the Sharfae’s for about five years and they have done great job taking care of my family. I bring my kids see them and the kids look forward to their visits. the Sharfae’s are always very sweet and knowledgeable and really give us all good tips on how to make sure that we don’t get cavities which is our main goal doctors have always been a great about being professional and making sure that our health is their number one priority and I really appreciate this office and well be here forever.