You could be enjoying a tasty ice cream or pie when you suddenly realize the presence of a hard substance in your mouth. To your shock, it's part of your broken tooth.
Your teeth can break due to trauma to your jaw. The trauma can be caused by a fall on a hard surface, through contact sport like boxing, or an accident. If you take proper care of your teeth, they can last for a long-time since enamel or the tooth’s outer layer is extremely strong. However, your teeth can chip, break or fracture despite being tough. If the fracture isn’t severe, you generally don’t experience any pain. But a severe fracture can be painful. Children and older people are more likely to experience cases of fractured and broken teeth. However, anybody can fracture or break their teeth despite their age. It's advisable to see your dentist immediately if you crack or break a tooth.
If you or your loved one is in La Puente, California, and need advanced dentist services for a broken or fractured tooth, look no further than La Puente Advanced Dentistry. Our dentists are qualified and have years of experience diagnosing and treating a myriad of dental ailments. We pride ourselves on offering the best dental treatment services in La Puente, California.
Parts Of A Tooth Susceptible to Fractures and Breaks
A tooth has two main parts: the crown, the visible part, and the root, which lies below the gums. Additionally, a tooth also has three layers, enamel, dentin and pulp. The enamel is the strong outer layer that offers protection to the inner teeth. Dentin is the second layer. Dentin isn’t as hard as the enamel, but it’s also not as soft as the pulp. The third part of the tooth is the pulp. The pulp contains the nerves and blood vessels. In most cases, your tooth hurts when the pulp is exposed to the elements.
Your teeth either break at the crown or the root. It’s easy to know when your tooth’s crown breaks since you can see or feel the fracture. The case is different when the tooth breaks or fractures at the root because the gums hide it. The treatment your dentist will administer depends on the severity and the location of the tooth fracture. The sooner you receive treatment, the higher the chance of recovery if the damage isn’t severe. Even if the fracture is severe, your dentist will recommend the best treatment option.
Various Causes Of Fractured And Broken Tooth
One of the most common causes of fractured and broken teeth is trauma. Your teeth can break if you are hit by a player during contact sports. A fall, a car accident, or physical violence can cause the fracture.
Age is another cause of broken and fractured teeth. Young children and older adults are more prone to this condition. As you grow older and reach 50, cracks start appearing on your teeth, leading to breakages and fractures.
Biting on hard food is another cause of broken teeth. You may apply too much pressure when biting or chewing hard food and break or fracture your tooth. The breakage can happen if your teeth aren’t strong enough to withstand the force.
Your eating habits are critical when it comes to maintaining healthy and strong teeth. Eating highly processed and sugary food damages and weakens your teeth. It’s crucial to limit the amount of sugar you consume.
Weak teeth are prone to break easily.
Dental fillings can also weaken the tooth and cause it to break. You can also break or fracture your teeth if you grind them, especially at night. Grinding wears down the enamel, which is the outer protective layer of your teeth. Once the enamel becomes weak, your teeth can easily break.
Teeth With The Highest Likelihood To Break Or Fracture
You can break or fracture any tooth. But your upper front teeth are more prone to break due to their position in the mouth. Mostly, you crack or break one tooth. However, you can break more than one tooth if you suffer significant trauma. Your lower back teeth are also prone to fractures, especially if you’re into contact sports like boxing. Additionally, your teeth are at a higher risk of breaking if they have cavities.
The Symptoms You’re Likely To Experience If You Have A Broken Or Fractured Tooth
It is possible to have a fractured tooth and not experience any symptoms, especially when the fracture isn’t severe. However, you’ll experience certain symptoms if it’s severe. You will feel pain, especially when chewing. The pain might come and go, and its severity increases when you chew on certain foods or take certain drinks.
Your broken or fractured tooth might become sensitive, especially to hot or cold drinks. It might also become sensitive to sweet food or drink. You might also notice swelling around the affected tooth. If the fracture is severe, the tooth might start to ache.
Why You May Feel Pain When You Suffer A Fractured Or Broken Tooth
Your fractured or broken teeth may or may not be painful. However, even if you might not experience any pain, you may feel the fracture with your tongue. A minor fracture isn’t typically painful. The case is different when the fracture is significant. You may also feel pain when chewing because you apply more pressure on the broken tooth.
Various Types Of Tooth Fractures
Your fracture will most likely fall under one of the five different types of tooth fractures.
With a cracked tooth, the crack runs from the biting surface of your tooth to the gum. If the crack is severe, it extends to the root of the tooth. If that’s the case, the dentist will most likely need to extract the tooth. They can also perform other treatments, including root canal and placing a crown on the tooth. The crown will protect the tooth from further damage.
Craze lines are hair-like cracks that appear on the surface of your tooth. They mainly affect the enamel and are not painful. They are so shallow that they don’t require any extensive treatment. Your dentist may slightly smoothen your enamel to treat the minor cracks.
Fractured cusps are fractured dental fillings. Several factors cause the dental filling to fracture. These factors include trauma to the tooth or the filling being incorrect, among other similar causes. Fortunately, in most cases, the fractured cusps aren’t very painful.
A split is usually due to a significant trauma to your tooth that divides it into two parts. The split can also start as a crack and develop into a split. The split extends up to your jawline. It might also affect the tooth’s root. If the split is extensive, your dentist might have to extract the tooth.
Vertical Tooth Fracture
The vertical root fracture extends from your tooth’s root downwards towards the biting surface unlike other fractures. It’s difficult to know about the vertical tooth fracture in its earlier states since it originates from the hidden part of your tooth. You only become aware of the crack if the surrounding tissue becomes infected or inflamed. Additionally, the inflammation or infection might be painful. In most cases, the dentist will have to extract the affected tooth.
Break Caused By Decay Or Cavities
A cavity weakens your tooth from inside out and makes it prone to break or fracture. Your dentist will examine the extent of the damage and recommend the most appropriate treatment. If the cavity is severe, the dentist may have to remove the tooth. If the damage isn’t as extensive, the dentist can use a dental filling to treat the condition.
A severe break is the most critical case of broken teeth. A severe break runs deep and exposes your tooth’s nerve endings. In most cases, it will be painful. The tooth might also bleed. The dentist may need to extract your tooth. However, before they remove it, they will check to see if there’s any other remedy. If the dentist decides to save the tooth, they can perform a root canal. The root canal treatment is when the dentist removes the exposed nerve. Afterward, the dentist restores your damaged tooth with a crown. The crown enables you to chew and bite food without any problem.
Is It Possible To Treat Your Broken Or Fractured Tooth At Home?
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to treat a broken or fractured tooth at home. Therefore, you need to make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. You can also visit the emergency room if your case is severe or in too much pain. However, if the pain is moderate, you can manage it at home before arriving for your appointment. You can use over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Remember, hot or cold foods and drinks increase the sensitivity of your teeth. Therefore, take foods and beverages at moderate temperature.
You can also use mouthwashes and kinds of toothpaste that have active ingredients to numb nerve endings. The pain subsides when the nerve endings become numb.
If The Tooth Is Broken And You’re Bleeding, Take The Following Steps Before You Arrive At The Hospital
If the broken tooth is bleeding, rinse your mouth with warm water. The water helps clean the injury. Place a piece of cotton pad or gauze over the bleeding area. Apply pressure on the broken tooth for about ten minutes or until the bleeding stops. If the cotton pad or gauze doesn’t stop the bleeding, use a teabag. According to research, tannic acid in tea enhances blood clots. Remember, extremely low temperature numbs the nerves and thus reduces swelling and pain. Therefore, place an ice pack over the location of the broken tooth.
You can also cover the broken tooth with dental cement if it takes a while to reach the hospital. You can find dental cement at the drug or grocery store. Don’t forget to take some over-the-counter pain relievers if the pain is too much.
Dental Procedures The Dentist Can Use To Repair Or Treat Your Broken Or Fractured Teeth
The dentist can repair your broken or cracked tooth using various procedures. Below are the most common dental treatment procedures.
Your dentist can use dental bonding to repair your broken or chipped tooth. Dental bonding is an excellent option as it can last for more than ten years with proper care. You won’t require anesthesia unless the dentist is performing the procedure on a cavity or exposed nerve.
With the procedure, the dentist roughens your tooth surface to make the composite stick better. The dentist applies the composite and uses special ultraviolet light to harden the composite. The procedure is usually perfect for fractures that aren’t severe.
Another procedure the dentist can use to treat broken or fractured teeth is veneers. Various types of veneers exist in the market. However, most dentists use porcelain veneers. These types of veneers look like your natural teeth. It’s tough to tell the difference. A veneer is a cover for your tooth. The dentist places it on top of your fractured tooth to cover the cracks.
The dentist bonds the veneer to the front of your tooth, and with proper care and oral hygiene, the veneers can last for up to thirty years. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about regular visits to the dentist for veneer replacement.
The dentist can bond the veneer to as many teeth as need the treatment. The medical specialist can also bond it to a single tooth. Veneers are an excellent treatment option since it's very noninvasive, and you generally don’t need anesthesia. It’s also long-lasting. However, veneers might not be the best option if you grind your teeth, as you’re likely to wear them down.
Another treatment option you may consider for a broken or fractured tooth is a crown. Crowns are a great option when the damage is extensive. A crown covers the visible part of your tooth. However, the dentist will have to chip away the enamel and shape the tooth to allow the crown to fit better. The crown preserves the tooth and enables the broken tooth to withstand the pressure of chewing and biting.
Dentists usually perform a root canal if the fracture has extended to the tooth’s pulp. After you heal from the procedure, the dentist can place a crown to prevent any further damage.
The root canal involves the dentist removing the decayed matter and the affected nerve. The dentist will place you under anesthesia to make the process less painful. If the damaged tooth is not treated, it can lead to an infection which can lead to severe problems.
A dental implant is the best option if the damage is too extensive and the dentist can’t save the tooth. This usually happens when the crack or fracture extends below the jawline into the tooth’s root. If that’s the case, the dentist will need to extract the tooth. After the extraction, the dentist can proceed with the dental implant procedure. The dentist can remove the tooth and insert the dental implant on the same day. You may also prefer to have the procedures on different days.
Dental implants act as the root of your teeth. The dentist then places a crown on the dental implant, and it’s difficult to distinguish it from your natural teeth. Dental implants are strong and will last longer if you maintain proper oral hygiene. However, the procedure takes between twelve to fourteen weeks to complete as you wait for the jawbone to heal.
Diagnosis Of Broken Or Fractured Teeth
When you visit your dentist because you suspect you might have a broken or fractured tooth, they will conduct some tests to ascertain the tooth’s condition. They will enquire about the symptoms. They will also ask you about the injury or trauma which caused the breakage or fracture. After the initial tests, the dentist will perform a detailed diagnosis to ascertain the extent of the damage. They will check if the tooth has cracked, whether it’s broken or fractured.
Call A La Puente Emergency Dentist Near Me
Oral health is critical for your general well-being. According to statistics, a majority of Americans need some form of dental procedure. Patients seek treatment for broken and fractured teeth. Various causes are responsible for the condition. Top of the list is trauma and age. Your oral health also plays a significant role. Healthy teeth are less likely to break or fracture.
It’s critical to visit a qualified dentist if you break or fracture your teeth. If you or your loved one is in La Puente, California, and needs treatment for a broken or fractured tooth, do not hesitate to contact La Puente Advanced Dentistry. We’ve been treating patients in La Puente and the larger state of California for a very long time. Our dentists have a wealth of experience in treating all kinds of dental ailments, including broken and fractured teeth. We are also experts at performing various dental procedures. Give us a call today at 626-626-7075 for a free consultation.