My teeth are nubs

I have severe bruxism and maloclussion. As a result my teeth have been ground practically down to nubs, though otherwise healthy. My dentist hasn’t done much to help me with this, except give me a mouthguard. However, the condition of my mouth really bothers me. Is it best for me just to pull them all and get dentures? I want a normal looking smile, where it is easy for me to eat. It’s a shame I’m dealing with this at 40 years old.

Steve G. from Minnesotta

Steve,

Bear in mind everything I am saying is without having examined you myself.

This would have been easier to treat in the beginning. If you’ve known about the TMJ issues, have you been to a TMJ dentist? I’d be  hardpressed to call them a competent one if all they did was give you a mouthguard.

I don’t think dentures at 40 is a good idea. In 10 to 20 years you’ll be dealing with facial collapse and won’t even be able to wear your dentures anymore. Even without that serious issue, rarely do denture patients feel like they have an “easy” way to eat.

It is always ideal to save your own teeth when possible. As you’ve said yours are otherwise healthy, though worn down, you might consider getting a full set of porcelain crowns. However, you must go to an experienced, well trained TMJ dentist. There are so many factors to consider when doing a case of your magnitude.

If you ever do get to the point when you do have to remove your teeth, than I recommend you get dental implants instead of dentures. That will protect your from getting facial collapse, and you’ll be able to eat normally.

This blog is brought to you by Boston Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Randall Burba.