A cracked tooth also called a broken/fractured tooth is when a crack appears in your tooth. The crack can be small or can cause your tooth to break. Tooth fractures are common in older people and children, although anyone can have tooth cracks.
Causes of a cracked tooth
Teeth crack due to a wide range of issues such as:
- Chewing or biting hard foods such as nuts
- Large fillings that might weaken tooth integrity
- Pressure from teeth grinding
- Blows to the mouth that might happen with a fistfight, accident, or sporting injury
- Sudden changes in your mouth temperature
- Age. Most teeth cracks occur in people aged over 50 years
Types of cracked teeth
Tooth cracks can appear as:
- Craze lines – These are small cracks in the enamel and cause no pain.
- Split tooth – This is a crack that travels from the tooth surface to below the gum line.
- Crack extending into gumline – A vertical crack that extends through the tooth but hasn’t reached the gum line
- Fractured cusp – This crack often occurs around a dental filling and doesn’t affect the tooth pulp
- Vertical root fracture – This crack starts below the gum line and travels upward
Symptoms of a cracked tooth
Having a cracked tooth doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll see the symptoms. Often, people have cracked teeth without knowing. However, if you notice the following signs, you require dental treatment:
- Swollen gum around the cracked tooth
- Teeth that have abruptly become sensitive to hot or cold foods
- Tooth pain that tends to come and go
- Discomfort around the teeth and gums
- Tooth pain when chewing or biting
When you should see a dentist
If you suspect that you have a cracked tooth, you should make an appointment with a dentist as soon as possible. Remember that when a cracked tooth goes untreated, the more difficult it may be to save it. It is recommended if you are feeling pain and discomfort.
Schedule an Appointment at Arrow Dental Centre
Treatment for a cracked tooth
Treatment for a fractured tooth depends on how much damage your tooth has. Common cracked tooth treatments include:
- Extraction: This involves complete removal of your tooth when the root and nerves are severely damaged.
- Root canal: This involves the removal of damaged pulp to prevent tooth weakening.
- Bonding: This involves applying plastic resin to fill in the fracture.
- Crown: A ceramic or porcelain cap is fitted over the cracked tooth.
- Veneer: This is a thin covering of plastic or porcelain that goes over the tooth front
How can cracked teeth be prevented?
Broken teeth can not always be prevented, but a few ways can help. These include:
- Wearing a mouth guard to protect teeth while playing sports
- Avoid clenching your teeth
- Trying not to grind teeth or other habits that might damage the teeth
- Avoiding foods that are hard to chew
Arrow Dental Centre in Nairobi offers restorative dentistry solutions to restore broken/cracked teeth. Schedule an appointment with us for broken tooth restoration.