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Cracked Teeth: Types And Associated Treatments

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One of the most common types of dental damage to teeth is a crack. Cracks can occur from a blow to the mouth or from biting down on a hard food, such as candy. When a crack forms, it should be treated to prevent oral bacteria from entering the inside of the tooth. Here are a few types of cracks that may form in a tooth and the treatments that may be used to remedy them:

Tiny Lines

Small cracks or lines that form in tooth enamel may not cause any pain. If a crack is minor and superficial, it may not even require dental treatment. However, if you experience any discomfort associated with a minor crack, it needs to be evaluated for possible treatment.

A visual examination of the tooth is usually not enough to determine the extent of a tiny crack. A dental x-ray may be needed. In addition, to make a line in a tooth more visible, the dentist may have you chew a dental dye tablet so that the crack will temporarily stain. If the crack is only in the enamel and treatment is needed, the dentist may apply a dental bonding material to seal the tiny line.

Vertical Cracks

A vertical fissure can form and extend from the top of the tooth near the gum line to the bottom chewing surface. As long as the crack doesn't completely break the tooth into two parts, it may be treatable. However, if the patient experiences great discomfort when chewing or extreme dental sensitivity to heat and cold, the crack may be affecting the dental nerve.

Treatment may include sealing the tooth with a bonding compound. However, even if the crack is fully sealed, the tooth may still require a root canal to treat the inflamed dental pulp.

A Split Tooth

Teeth can become so deeply cracked that they split into two parts. In such a case, the tooth should be treated as quickly as possible. Nevertheless, extraction is usually the only treatment option.

It is important to treat a cracked tooth quickly. Because the crack weakens the tooth, the compromised integrity can result in a deeper crack or a complete split. To help avoid a tooth extraction or an extensive restorative procedure such as a root canal you should receive professional treatment as soon as possible after noticing a dental crack. If you believe that you have a cracked tooth, schedule an appointment with a dentist in your area today. Click here to read more.