As a child it’s exciting when your tooth becomes loose! You’ll be getting your big kid teeth soon and a visit from the tooth fairy— hopefully along with some cash too!
But as an adult, loose teeth are an uncomfortable and stressful experience. With every bite of your food, you’re wondering if you’ll discover your tooth stuck in your scrumptious burger! And what if you swallow your tooth?!
We’re here to put your mind at ease when it comes to your loose teeth. One of the ways we treat loose teeth is through a tooth splint, or perio splint.
What is a perio splint? Periodontal splinting helps stabilize your loose teeth by attaching them to healthy teeth typically using a wire and “dental glue” — a composite material similar to that used in tooth fillings.
What Causes Loose Teeth?
Teeth may become loose due to many different factors:
Trauma or injury
But the biggest culprit of loose teeth among adults is periodontal (gum) disease. This disease is an infection of the structures supporting your teeth; from your gums, to the soft tissues of your mouth, and the bones that hold your teeth. The most common cause of periodontal disease is poor hygiene, but genetics play a part as well. Which is why it’s important to visit a periodontist if you have a family history of gum disease. When you have loose teeth due to periodontal disease this is typically labeled as stage 3 periodontal disease— advanced periodontitis. Sounds a little scary, but our certified periodontists have extensive training and experience in treating all stages of periodontal disease.
Benefits of Splinting Teeth
The best benefit of splinting loose teeth is avoiding tooth loss! Our periodontists’ goal is to help you keep your natural teeth. Doing so means you’re able to keep the natural tooth structure which allows for better breathing, chewing, speech, and healthy bone levels.
Combined with an improved oral hygiene routine and regular periodontal maintenance appointments, a dental splint for loose teeth can also help strengthen your teeth!
Tooth Splinting Technique
Periodontal splinting typically involves splinting the front teeth. Our periodontists will use a durable composite material and custom metal brackets or wires to secure your loose teeth together. A perio splint helps evenly distribute the force and pressure of your bite among your affected and healthy teeth.
Temporary splints are placed to allow you to undergo periodontal maintenance and give your gums time to heal and reattach to your teeth. These splints can be used in two different ways. Tooth splints can be attached to a group of teeth by bonding them to the enamel on the crown of your teeth. Or by cutting a small channel into your loose teeth to help secure a custom metal splint in this groove.
Fixed or permanent splints are when your loose teeth are fused together using crowns and a custom splint. These can only be removed by a periodontal professional.
If you have a habit of clenching or grinding your teeth, our experienced periodontists can create a custom, removable bite guard, or occlusal splint, for you. Splints like these are especially important for those with sleep bruxism! When you clench or grind your teeth, the force exerted on your teeth is equal to 250 pounds.
Still have questions about tooth (perio) splinting?
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions. We love to hear from you and we want to provide you with the information you need to maintain a beautiful smile.