How to Tighten A Loose Tooth At Home

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Would you like to know how to tighten a loose tooth at home?

Noticing a loose tooth or even worse, several loose teeth, can be quite unsettling. The good news is that, depending on the cause and severity, it is often possible to tighten loose teeth back up again, without any surgical or other invasive interventions.

In the vast majority of cases, loose teeth are caused by poor oral hygiene and the many problems that come with that, including gum disease.

If you want to learn how to notice a loose tooth, what causes one, and how to fix a loose tooth, then keep on reading.

What does a loose tooth feel like?

Loose teeth lack structural support and are in the process of detaching themselves fully from the bone and gum. In other words, if you notice a loose tooth in your mouth, you have to act quickly and seek treatment if you want to prevent tooth loss.

If you have a loose tooth, you will typically notice that your tooth feels “off” and slightly wiggly while brushing, flossing, or eating. It may also feel either or less sensitive than the surrounding teeth. Beyond the looseness, other signs of a loose tooth to watch out for are bloody gums, swollen gums, and gum recession.

If you put any amount of pressure on loose teeth, they will either wiggle or move ever so slightly back and forth. If your teeth are loose, it is important to avoid putting pressure on them.

What causes loose teeth in adults

There are so many different factors that lead to loose teeth. Some of these factors are within your control – and other’s aren’t. Here is a rundown of the most common causes of loose teeth in adults.

Ageing

Ageing is inevitable and comes with certain challenges – loose teeth being one of them!

As you age, your connective tissues, including your gums, becomes weaker. As a result, experiencing loose teeth in old age is not unusual. Even so, you should keep seeing your dentist regularly and ask them for the best treatment options available in your situation.

Poor dental hygiene

Poor oral hygiene is the root of most ills when it comes to dental health problems, and loose teeth is no exception to this iron rule.

If you neglect to brush and floss as regularly or as thoroughly as needed, your teeth and gums are going to suffer as a result.

Going just a few days without brushing properly can be enough to cause inflamed and infected gums. If you would like to learn more about what happens if you don’t stay on top of your oral hygiene every day, read our article about the truth of what happens if you don’t brush your teeth.

Gum disease

Gum disease is almost always the result of ongoing poor dental hygiene. If you don’t brush, floss, and have routine cleanings, you can be absolutely certain that tartar and bacteria will build up under your gums. Eventually, the acids these bacteria create will cause inflammation, irritation and gum disease.

Advanced gum disease, also called periodontitis, is the most common thing can cause the gums to pull away from the teeth. The predictable result is loose teeth.

Teeth grinding

Unfortunately, grinding your teeth can cause a lot of damage to them – including loosening them!

Teeth grinding is often an unconscious habit, particularly if you do it in your sleep. If you suspect that your loose teeth might be down to teeth grinding, see your dentist about getting a mouthguard to wear at night to prevent you from grinding.

Tooth injury

Impact injury is one of those factors that are beyond your conscious control.

If you sustain an injury to your teeth and they have become loosened as a result, you should set up an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.

Unhealthy lifestyle habits

There are so many lifestyle habits that can play into your oral health.

Some of the unhealthy lifestyle habits that have a detrimental effect on both your teeth and gums include smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, a diet containing too many sugary and acidic foods and drinks, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and ongoing stress.

Home remedies and preventative measures

If you suspect you might have any loose teeth, you should set up an appointment with your dentist right away, but in the meantime, here are a few home remedies that can help improve your oral health and tighten loose teeth.

Double down on your oral hygiene

If your teeth are slowly becoming weak and loose, you must double down on your oral hygiene habits ASAP!

You should always brush your teeth twice daily, for at least two minutes each time. You should also use mouthwash on a regular basis in order to prevent bacterial growth in your mouth. Other recommendations for good oral hygiene include flossing after meals, and using a straw whenever you enjoy any cold beverages other than water (particularly carbonated, sugary or alcoholic beverages).

If you want to learn more about how to maintain excellent oral hygiene and health, read our article on the subject right here.

Change your diet

Your diet can have a tremendous impact on your oral and overall health, including the condition of your gums.

You probably already know the mantra, but it bears repeating: Up your intake of whole foods such as grains, legumes, vegetables and fruits. And at the same time, stay away from the sugary stuff and junk food as far as possible. 

Calcium and Vitamin D supplements

Calcium and vitamin D are essential for both teeth and bone health.

A deficiency of these nutrients can easily cause your dental health to deteriorate, and may lead to loose and shaky teeth.

If you do not get enough of these minerals through your regular diet, then supplements are a good idea. Supplementing your diet with the vitamins sand minerals your body needs is vital, whether the goal is to strengthen loose teeth or prevent bone density loss over time.

Pepper and turmeric

Pepper and turmeric are a powerful combination when it comes to improving gum health and firmness.

This is how to prepare the concoction: Crush equal amounts turmeric root and black pepper in a small bowl, until you end up with a powder. Gently massage this powder onto your gums for a few minutes. Then, rinse well with cool and clean water, and give it at least thirty minutes before you eat or drink anything else.

Garlic

Did you know that garlic is packed with tonnes of health benefits, as well as amazing flavor?

Garlic contains a powerful antimicrobial agent, so if bacterial infection is the root cause of your teeth being loose, garlic will help fight and prevent the infection.

This is how to use the garlic to treat gum infection and strengthen the tissues: Take a single garlic clove and peel it. Cut it into two halves and place one of the halves near the affected area. If possible, wedge it in between your gums. Leave the garlic on for as long as you can stand it. The goal is to let the garlic juices drench the tooth and gums.

Salt water gargle

Salt water gargle is the oldest and safest way to strengthen loose teeth.

Preparing a salt water gargle couldn’t be simpler: Stir a few tablespoonfuls of salt in a glass of water and use it to gargle for at least 30 seconds before spitting.

Hydrogen peroxide rinse

Hydrogen peroxide rinse is another great idea to prevent gum infection and flush harmful bacteria. 

Hydrogen peroxide is know not remove the bacteria in or around loose teeth and gums.

How your dentist can help tighten loose teeth

Whether you notice on or several loose teeth in your mouth, it’s best to consult your dentist without delay. Only a dental professional will be able to accurately assess the cause, severity and necessary treatment for your loose teeth.

If at all feasible, your dentist will attempt to save your loose teeth from falling out— however, depending on the cause and severity, it may be necessary to extract the tooth and replace it with an implant.

Scaling and root planing

Scaling and root planing is the professional term for deep cleaning of the teeth and gums.

If your loose teeth are cause by gum disease or excessive plaque and tartar buildup, scaling and root planing is often an effective way to fix loose teeth and improve your overall oral health.

Scaling and root planing is carried out either by a dentist or a dental hygienist. The emphasis is on deep cleaning your gum pockets, where plaque might have layered itself and gotten stuck, causing gum disease or irritation.

Gum surgery

In some of the more severe cases, surgery might be needed. 

In these cases, an oral surgeon will remove inflamed gum tissue to treat the problem, and if necessary, he or she will graft tissue or bone from other areas in the mouth.

Tooth splinting

Another option is splinting multiple teeth together for support.

There are a variety of different methods for tooth splinting, but the aim with all of them is to join the loose teeth with stable teeth.

Bite adjustment

Bite adjustment is a very common way of supporting gum healing and treating loose teeth, particularly in cases where the loose teeth are caused by bite issues.

Bite adjustment is where teeth are altered to improve the bite and to distribute the chewing forces more evenly. This results in all the teeth being hit at the same time, which allows for any loose teeth to tighten up when they are not constantly under intense pressure from biting and chewing.

Tooth extraction and replacement

Unfortunately, there may be cases where the dentist is not able to save your teeth.

In these cases, the affected tooth or teeth are extracted, and are often replaced with dental implants or a bridge.

Takeaway

The best treatment for loose teeth is to prevent loose teeth in the first place.

Poor dental hygiene is often the cause of loose teeth, so getting serious about your oral health routine is at once the best prevention and the best cure for loose teeth.

Tightening loose teeth at home is not always possible, however, so if you suspect you may have one or more loose teeth, it is a good idea to consult your dentist.

Frequently asked questions

Can a loose tooth tighten itself back up?

Fortunately, yes, in some cases a loose tooth might be able to tighten itself back up. 
Here are just a few of the things you can do to support gum healing and fix loose teeth:

+ Stay on top of your oral hygiene habits

+ Take Vitamin D and calcium supplements to support bone and connective tissue health

+ Gargle with salt water or hydrogen peroxide to cleanse the teeth and gums

+ Try gum-strengtehning home remedies including garlic, tumeric and pepper

How long does it take a tooth to tighten back up?

Precisely how long it will take for your teeth to tighten back up is going to depend on the severity and cause of your loose teeth.

In the worst case scenario, your dentist will have to extract the tooth and replace it with a bridge or an implant. But in many cases, your tooth will be able to tighten itself back up if you give it the support it needs to be able to do so. If given the right conditions, a loose tooth can tighten itself back up again in a matter of weeks.

Dr Febin Mary George - Editor

With more than 10 years as a dental surgeon, Dr Febin Mary George is passionate about educating consumers around the world to help look after their teeth.

She completed her Bachelor of Surgery at the Century Institute of Dental Science and Research Centre in 2010.

Alongside editing the International Journal of Dental Clinics she has also written for major publications including Thrive Global.

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