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Dental and Oral Health (Adults)

Slightly loose tooth??

08/01/2006

Question:

I have a question, the other day I was wiggling my front tooth and i think it could be slightly loose but im not sure because its so hard to tell if it is or not. i mean if it is its maybe like the size of a pin movement and I was reading articles and it says that tooth looseness is always present its just that if you can actually move it noticeably that you have problems. i mean i have no pain in the tooth whatsoever. i was just wondering if this is something i should worry about or not.

Answer:

Dentists measure tooth mobility (looseness) on a scale of 0-3 or 0-4. Even though a "normal, healthy" tooth shows 0 (zero) or physiologic mobility, it may seem to move a "little," especially if it is a small lower front tooth (incisor).  More-than-normal tooth mobility is generally an indication of adult gum disease. Implanted teeth do not normally move at all. 

Your local dentist can assess the mobility of your teeth and possibility compare them over time and also evaluate the health of your gums.  Gum disease usually does not hurt (no pain). More and better brushing and flossing might help to tighten up loose teeth.

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Response by:

David Lee Hall, DDS David Lee Hall, DDS
Clinical Associate Professor of Primary Care
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University