A broken tooth
A broken tooth is a big deal. Having a broken tooth can cause pain, sensitivity and can be sharp to your tongue and cheek. But what can you do for a broken tooth and how do you prevent them from happening?
A weakened tooth, cavities, poor habits and diet are the major factors that lead to a broken tooth. Some teeth have had cavities in the past and have large filling placed in them. Larger fillings can cause cracks to form in the tooth over time. These cracks get bigger and bigger until finally the tooth breaks. The same thing can happen with an untreated cavity. Cavities if left untreated become bigger and bigger, eating away at the tooth from underneath the surface. Eventually there is no more structure left to support the outer portion of the tooth and the tooth breaks. Damaging habits such as clinching and grinding can also cause a broken tooth. Clinching and grinding causes additional wear and tear on the teeth which eventually causes the tooth to break. No matter the reason of the broken tooth, it is important to get in to the dentist as soon as possible to prevent further breakdown of the tooth and to prevent needing more complex procedures to fix the tooth.
The size of the break in the tooth can be very important in determining the best treatment for a broken tooth. For smaller breaks, the area can be smoothed down and a tooth colored filling can be placed to protect the tooth from further breakdown. For larger breaks, the tooth can be rebuilt and covered with a crown. This is the best option to prevent further damage to the tooth because a crown covers the entire surface of the tooth and is made of extremely durable materials that are hard to break. If the break is severe, it may require a root canal to prevent further infection and pain as well as a crown to properly restore the tooth to normal function.
If you have a broken tooth, it is important not to wait as the likelihood of further damage to the tooth may require more treatment to fix. Something that may have needed only a filling, may need a crown if more of the tooth breaks.