A loose tooth in adulthood doesn’t occur without cause. You may initially notice looseness while brushing or flossing, or your dentist may notice some wobbling during a routine dental appointment.

In some cases, a loose tooth is due to advanced gum disease. This is when a bacterial infection attacks your gums, tissue, and surrounding bones.

Gum disease is the result of poor dental hygiene. If you don’t brush or floss on a regular basis, or if you skip regular dental cleanings, tartar can build up into the space underneath your gums. This disease is treatable. If caught early, it’s possible to kill an infection, stop inflammation, and restore the health of your teeth.

A loose tooth can progress and eventually detach completely from the gums and bone. This can occur with severe gum disease or from unresolved teeth grinding. Treatment, however, can improve the health of your gums and bones. This also promotes healing and strengthens teeth.

Practicing good oral hygiene can prevent a loose tooth caused by gum disease. This includes brushing your teeth at least two or three times a day and flossing daily. You should also schedule regular dental cleanings twice a year, and speak with your dentist if you notice any changes, such as bad breath, painful gums, or bleeding gums.