Theriot Family Dental

How to Prevent Facial Collapse with Dentures?

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I am only in my late thirties and was recently diagnosed with a severe calcium deficiency. I am undergoing treatment. My teeth have always been a struggle for me and my dentist said that the calcium deficiency means I might as well give up and have all my teeth extracted and get dentures. I have been in tears since my appointment and have not been able to bring myself to schedule the extractions. After doing some reading on dentures, I discovered that it causes your face to collapse and you look decades older. I have toddlers and do NOT want to look like their grandmother. Can you please help me? Is there any way to prevent this?


Dear Mazie,

before and after facial collpase.

I’m glad you wrote. I have a couple of suggestions for you. But first, for those who are unaware of facial collapse, I’ll give a brief explanation. When your teeth are removed, your body recognizes that and begins to immediately resorb the minerals in your jawbone. It does this in an effort to be as efficient as possible with your body’s resources. It does have the unfortunate affect of shrinking your jawbone. After ten or so years, there is no longer enough jawbone left to even retain your dentures.

Do You Even Need Your Teeth Removed?

I’m a bit concerned that your dentist is misleading you here. A calcium deficiency developed in adulthood will not cause you to have problems with your teeth now. Your teeth are already fully developed by the time your calcium deficiency started. What it will lead to is cramps, nerve problems, or osteoporosis.

It sounds to me more like your dentist is one of those who doesn’t like to invest too much time in saving teeth and this was a convenient excuse for him. It’s easier for him if he just pulls them and gives you dentures. This is not the best dentist for you, if that is the case. My suggestion is that you get a second opinion on the condition of your teeth and what can be done to save them.

Preventing Facial Collapse

If you do end up needing to remove all your teeth, there is a way to prevent facial collapse. Instead of getting completely removable dentures, you need to get implant supported dentures. The dental implants tell your body that you still have teeth which need to be supported. As a result it leaves the minerals from your jawbone completely intact.

It’s also a great way to completely secure your dentures, which means you won’t have any of the life-changing problems that come with removable dentures such as slipping or difficulty chewing food.

Get that second opinion, first. Then make a decision from there.

This blog is brought to you by Baton Rouge Dentist Dr. John Theriot.