Rossen Dental Staff, The Colony, TX

Our patient Bonnie asked, “Why do adult teeth sometimes feel a little loose?”

When we investigated further it seemed that the loose feeling is its worst in the mornings but gradually tightens up and eventually the sensation disappears completely. She had also noticed that her teeth had been a little more sensitive to cold than usual.

tooth feels loose

What this sounds like is that some sort of trauma has caused stretching of the tiny rubber bands all around the roots of our teeth, called periodontal ligaments. There are thousands of ligaments lined up like the small springs all around a trampoline. These ligaments are what allow our teeth to bounce in their sockets without breaking. By far the most common trauma that causes this looseness is when we clench our teeth while we sleep at night. Some people sleep with their teeth forced tightly shut for many hours per night, and all that pushing can make their teeth feel a little bit wiggly in the mornings.

“Some sort of trauma has caused stretching of the tiny rubber bands all around the roots of our teeth, called periodontal ligaments. There are thousands of ligaments lined up like the small springs all around a trampoline.”

Over time, this trauma can be very detrimental to teeth, causing the gums to recede, making teeth shift and become more crowded, and even breaking teeth off at the gumline. Other symptoms of clenching include a general sensitivity to cold temperature, sore facial and jaw muscles, and the appearance of tiny fracture lines in the tooth surface. Many people think of these fracture lines as natural signs of aging, but they really are more of an indication of damaging habits than anything else.

Dental nightguard to protect your teeth while sleeping
Dental nightguard designed to protect your teeth while sleeping.

There are other diseases that also can cause adult teeth to feel loose, but if you suspect that you may be clenching your teeth at night it’s a good idea to make an appointment with us soon. That way we can see if damage has already begun, and then help ease the trauma with a custom-made nighttime cushion that will protect your teeth and muscles from this midnight assault.

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Trish Walraven

Trish moved to The Colony in 1992 after finishing her bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene at Texas Woman’s University, and has been helping Dr. Rossen take care of his patients’ smiles since 1999.

The small-town feel here is the best, according to Trish, so be sure to say “hi” when you see her at the sports fields, schools, and at the grocery store. She and her husband are blessed to have two loving kids, a couple of schnauzers, and a thriving dental software company. Also, visit her at DentalBuzz.com, a humor and dental trends website.

Dental Hygienist
Trish moved to The Colony in 1992 after finishing her bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene at Texas Woman’s University, and has been helping Dr. Rossen take care of his patients’ smiles since 1999.

35 Thoughts on “Why Do Adult Teeth Sometimes Feel a Little Loose?”

  • Half of my front tooth was knocked out when i banged it and i got a filling type of thing made to look like the real tooth. I knocked that off to. and my real tooth is now really wobbly. I don’t want anyone to take it out i’m only 12 please help?

  • Well I am 11 and I also have a loose adult tooth. I already went to the dentist and they checked it out. They told me I might have to get a root canal. I am going to a specialist on Tuesday. Then I will find out if i do really need a root canal or not. I just haven’t messed with it. Just don’t worry about it. You might be getting yourself worried about nothing serious. I would suggest getting it checked out by a dentist. They should help you from there.

    • If you two indeed are 11 and 12, you can be proud of yourself.

      Indeed you sound much older than you are. Nice too see kids well mannered and educated. 🙂

        • Hi

          Over the past 2 months I’ve been getting the felling that my teeth are moving extremely slightly I’ve looked it up and they said its becomes bones are flexible but I’m not sure I have had healthy (but not the right colour) teeth it more or less when I drink or after I brush my teeth

          Can you help? I’m only 12 Hugh ?

  • Yeah so, I’m 10 and I’ve already lost three, count ’em, THREE adult teeth. Bulldog kicked me in the mouth (he’s the nehboorhod bully) with a steeltoe boot and cracked off two teeth. I could whistle by just blowing through the hole but then the dentist bonded them with something. But something went wrong and both those teeth got infected and hurt reel bad and had to be pulled.

    Another tooth next to those two got loose and finally fell out on its own. Now I have three missing teeth on top in front. I see the specialist tomorrow about a bridge.

    Got that? I’m only 10 and I’ll wear a bridge like my granpaw!

    • I’m 10 as well, and, like, 8 of my adult teeth feel loose.. One of them I don’t remember if it’s an adult tooth or baby tooth..

    • Exactly the Same thing .I was so worried because I thought I was the only one.I am glad to hear that It’s not just me

      • Answering all of these comments, I’m 12 and my teeth are a bit off white but not bad, they feel loose when I wobble them but it’s nothing to worry about. Your teeth aren’t gonna fall out and no matter how much you take care of them they just are wobbly. I dunno why but it happens to everyone. So don’t stress but if it makes u feel any better go to a dentist or specialist. Hope this comment helped

  • Hello, i am 15 and i got my Braces off about 10-13 months ago and i continuously wore my retainer. But when i reached the time where i only had to wear it at night i began to slack off. And when i woke up today i noticed my bottom tooth was slightly loose from not wearing the retainer because they were shifting. Should i just wearing them 24/7 for 6 months again? Idk what to do :c

    • wow! The same thing is happening to me right now! It’s really scary because no matter what I do…I can’t take back the times where I did. I’m 15 right now and then orthodontist says that I have to wear my retainer 24/7 for the entire summer and if there is no improvement by then….we’ll have to make some changes. He didn’t say what would happen if there was no improvement so now I’m just an anxious mess.
      I know there is no real advice in this, but at least you know you’re not alone in this.
      But which tooth is it? Mine is the one right underneath my right big front tooth.

    • Same here, i have the same issue except i haven’t spoken to an orthodontist. I just assumed that it would be because i forgot to wear my retainer a few times and had to force it in for them to move back. Its a little wobbly but i can still eat apples and all so maybe its just me being over panicked, overall i think you should jut were your retainer for a bit again until the feeling fades and then go back onto just wearing them at nights? Thats all i can advise.

  • Im 14 and my front tooth feels a little loose i dont know why this is… Does anyone know what might be wrong? I had braces but they got taken off about a year ago i think thats what caused It the be a little wobbley

    • I am also 14 and one of my teeth feels loose when I shake my head vigorously. I can eat and do everything else, and it hurts a little bit, but I’m mostly concerned that it is loose.

    • Brandon, don’t worry, I had braces on my 4 front teeth on a onlyvthose 4 are wobbly. It’s just because the braces moved ur teeth around so ur gum and roots are more flexible. It’s happens mainly if u had braces but if not it’s still ok, if it makes u feel any better go to a dentist or tooth specialist, something like that. Hope this comment helped

  • I’m 14 an in the mornings when I just wake up my front tooth feels loose I check in the mirror and it wobbles slightly I’m quite scared what should I do?

  • Hey im 16 and my bottom 2 middle teeth are wobbling and have left a gap i went to the dentist and he told me i got gingtivitis and gave me a gum gel i am using it but how long does it take to get better and make my teeth stop wobbling and does the gap finish after your gums are cured.

  • I am 66 years old, and I have advanced tooth recession. My teeth are loose at times, but sometimes not loose at all. When I bite down, my jaw where the tooth sits, hurts. This has happened before and went away, It is now back. Is there anything I can do?

  • I had to get my baby molar taken out due to too many sweets and ever since then my adult tooth has grown in! I have tried so hard to keep my mouth clean and well brushes but sometimes I forget to brush my teeth in the morning as I’m in a rush! Now my molar that has grown in feels slightly wobbly and I’m worried it is going to come out. Please help me.

  • I’m only 10, and my right canine plus my my two front bottom teeth feel kinda loose. It’s not mild, but it’s not major: I don’t know..

    I was diagnosed with Gingivitis a few years ago.

    I’m not sure whether it’s a baby tooth or an adult tooth. I don’t remember, since I’m very forgetful, but the thought frightens me..
    I’ve tried rubbing some fruits against it and it felt more stable, should I keep doing that or train myself to stop messing with it?

  • i really can’t believe a bunch of 10 year olds are commenting on a dentist site i might be wrong i just can’t believe it are you guys trolling or do 10 year olds use the internet like this

  • Oh am 11 I woke up this morning and 2 of my teeth starts to shake I wonder if they will get back tight for time to time

  • Hi i am 16 as well and my teeth hurts a little bit and it a little loose and im scared i will look like an jack-o-lantern. I keep wiggling it with my tounge and it hurts.I have kinda experienced something like this but obviously that was my babby teeth.I kinda scared that i will eventually get my tooth pulled out or it will increase pain a little or i might bite on it.I dont know what to do can somone tell me what to do

  • hi I’m 11and I’m really scared because I was never the one to brush my teeth all the the time and my teeth were a little tiny bit wiggly and I freaked out because I’m not the kind of person who brushes there teeth a whole lot and I woke up to looks teeth at 3a.m. I’m gonna ask my mom about going to the dentist although I hate dentists because see they scare me but I would rather not loose teeth pls reply anyone to say at least I’m not alone and if I will be ok ;-;

  • I’m 14 and my bottom front tooth has gone tiny wobbly now wand again
    And my top two front teeth go wobbly also now and agin I have top set braces and I’m getting lovwere set in oct
    Is this normal
    Or is my braces doing this to my teeth

  • I’m 22 and both top and bottom feel very loose. More my bottom ones. My gums at the bottom look a litte white. I went to the dentist and was told I do have a little of receding due to brushing to hard. He said my teeth look fine and aren’t going to fall out just to continue brushing 2x per day and flossing and brushing more gently. Ps. Did use some whitening strips back in October 2017 but I would think everything would go back to normal with my teeth since it’s been about 2-3 months now. I know the dentist said my teeth aren’t going to fall out, but I they still feel very loose. I’m freaking out that and lately that’s all I think off. ?? I almost feel like something I might have a panic attack. Has anyone experienced this too ?

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