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What to Do If You Crack or Chip Your Tooth?

What to Do If You Crack or Chip Your Tooth?

A chip on the upper tip of the tooth or a crack can occur if you fall, get a blow on the face or bite something really hard.

You may not even be aware of it as cracks are almost invisible, and barely show in x-rays.

Many chips are not serious and require very little or no treatment. Your dental surgeon will evaluate the damage and suggest possibilities.

However, just for the fear of going to a dentist, people delay oral treatment, not realizing how important it is for overall health.

These problems may be minor but more serious issues can be avoided by addressing them right away.

How Do You Know You Have a Chip or Crack?

The symptoms

You can suspect a crack or chip in the tooth when it has any of the following symptoms:-

  1. Heat and cold sensitivity- tooth enamel is very hard but when it is impaired, the inner parts get exposed and it becomes sensitive to very hot, cold, and sweet foods.
  2. Pain while biting or munching- eating mechanism would put pressure on the affected area and cause pain
  3. Intermittent pain- not continuous but occasional pain
  4. Gum swelling- cracking may affect the gum that holds the tooth and results in swelling.


Home Care

When you are caught up at work or looking for a weekend dentist, you can take some measures at home.

Visit the best dentist in Kirkland as you will, you must protect your affected tooth until then. First of all, prevent bacteria from entering inside by warm saline rinses.

If you are experiencing pain take an over-the-counter pain leaving medicine. You may apply dental wax or chewing gum over the uneven edge to protect your tongue, lips, and oral cavity from cuts.

Avoid flossing there as it may cause more breakage.

Do not chew from the affected site. Eat soft and semi-solid foods to not aggravate the problem.

Do remember, these are not treatments but only first aid methods. You must see a dental surgeon as early as possible.


Potential Risks of Delaying Treatment

Chipped or not, your teeth will constantly be underuse while you eat your food. In case you are thinking that the issue is minor, you may do so.

However, there is a potential risk of worsening the condition if not fixed right away, that you might not be aware of. As they say, a stitch in time saves nine!


Broken Tooth

A chip or crack left unattended may break the tooth! Yes, one might think it's just a cosmetic problem that looks ugly but actually, it is much more.

If you let it stay without repair your pearl might break severely. It would expose the insides, the 'endo' part with the pulp and the nerves.

Particles will enter from there, cause decay, pain, and deeper problems. Breakage is a potential threat to the life of the teeth and you may lose it.


Treatment Will Become Lengthy and Costlier

Unlike some other body parts teeth do not heal on their own. Small chips and cracks may grow into a more complex problem, which requires lengthy and more expensive treatments.

The little gateways invite infection inside which may spread into the blood. It is detrimental to overall health.

Possible Treatments for Cracked Tooth

On examining your mouth, and with the help of an x-ray, your dentist will assess the extent of the crack and ways to fix it. Depending on the tooth's history and present condition, he may suggest one of the following treatments:-

  1. Filling
  2. Crowning
  3. Veneers
  4. RCT


Filling: If your tooth is healthy, has no history of cavities or breakage, and the harm is slight, the dentist will repair it with a dental filling. One visit would do it.

Crowning: When it is an inside chewing molar with a big chip, then filling is not the ideal solution. In such a case dentists need to cover it with a crown.  

Dental veneer: It is a type of cosmetic dentistry. Veneers are wafer-thin pieces of porcelain or composite resin that can be expertly bound to your teeth. They look exactly like your natural teeth.

When the chipped tooth is on the front, veneers give them a natural appearance in terms of color and luster.

At Kirkland Premier Dentistry, we use veneers to address broken, cracked, uneven and disclosure teeth to give your pearls a beautiful look and enchanting smile.

RCT: Sometimes the teeth get severe damage harming the soft tissue inside. It requires root canal therapy by which the inner pulp is removed and filled for restoration.

The tooth is then covered with a cap or a crown to protect it.

Two or three visits to the dentist might be required for this depending on the damage and the patient.

Tooth removal: Though uncommon, but serious cases of cracks may mandate removing the tooth altogether and replacing it with a bridge or a dental implant.

Usually, it is the last option a dentist exercises.

Dr. Apri Dhaliwal Dr. Apri Dhaliwal Dr. Apri Dhaliwal grew up in Punjab, India where he dreams of becoming a dental professional with a love of art and science. He trained internationally in India for 5 years and then continued his studies after moving to the United States and graduated from the Rutgers School of Dental Medicine in New Jersey. He believes in happy and healthy living. Apart from his profession, he loves to spend time with the love of his life and son Zoraan. He also enjoys playing football, doing photography, and listening to Bhangra music.

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