Teeth cracks and breaks represent a significant number of dental visits. The treatment you require depends on various factors, such as the degree of the crack and the location of the tooth, the tooth’s specific history of treatment, and the presence of decay and infection. Most dental cracks and chips are superficial and easily remedied, but serious fractures and breaks require more intensive restoration or possibly extraction.
Contact us immediately if your tooth cracks in half. Don’t put off repairing a broken tooth. The risk of infection in the tooth’s pulp and the gum and bone beneath the damaged tooth increases signficantly for every day you put off seeing a dentist. Continue to brush your teeth regularly until you can schedule the visit, but be extra cautious when brushing so as not to exacerabate the problem.
What causes teeth to crack or break?
People who grind their teeth at night or clench their teeth during the day are at risk for cracks and breaks. If you wake up with pain in your jaw or a headache, this could be a sign you are doing damage to your teeth. If you notice yourself clenching your teeth as a response to stress, you’re also doing damage.
If your teeth are misaligned, you’ll place too much force in one region, increasing the risk of breaks. Teeth can be damaged due to injury and will be cracked or broken on impact. These types of breaks are serious, so seek urgent advice. If you use your teeth as a tool, by doing things such as cutting thread or opening bottles, you risk chipping the enamel.
We will assess the damage and determine what treatment options are available for treating the tooth.
1 – Simple bonding
If you have a very superficial crack in your tooth and you aren’t experiencing pain, bonding is an excellent and simple remedy. We can repair the crack with the same material used to create white fillings, known as composite resin. Composite resin is similar to putty and is matched to the color of your tooth. This is the ideal solution for patients with craze lines, which run down the enamel of your teeth.
2 – Veneers
There are three types of veneers: porcelain, composite, and lumineers. Veneers are popular because they are matched to the shape and color of your teeth and can also be reshaped to give you even better-looking teeth. They are a great option for restoring cracked or broken teeth and can last for decades, but they aren’t a good fit for patients who grind their teeth because they can be damaged.
3 – Crowns
A crown is a type of cap placed over the flat chewing surface of the tooth which provides strength to your damaged tooth. This is the best option for patients with a fractured cusp, the technical term for the part of the tooth responsible for grinding. While these types of breaks aren’t painful, leaving them untreated means you run the risk of losing the entire tooth.
4 – Root canal
If you have a severely cracked tooth, it is possible damage has migrated deep into the tooth, known as the pulp. The most common symptom of this issue is pain, especially when you are eating something cold such as ice cream or something hot like soup. A root canal is a common dental procedure.
A root canal involves removing the damaged nerve so the infection cannot spread any further. After a root canal, it is common for teeth to be capped to provide the tooth with additional strength.
5 – Dental implants
If a crack is left untreated, it can migrate below the gums. This means the tooth is no longer able to function and must be extracted. A popular option after an extraction is to replace the missing tooth with a dental implant. An implant is reasonably straightforward and painless. After the insertion of a screw, a prosthetic tooth is placed on top. Implants take place over a series of appointments.
If you think your tooth might be cracked or broken, contact our office immediately so you can avoid further damage and possible infection, and possibly save your tooth.