Dental chips and cracks can range from minor damage to the outer enamel to severe damage that can penetrate the inner dentine or even the nerve tissue of your tooth. If you’ve chipped or cracked a tooth, it’s best to contact us as soon as possible in order to save your tooth – even if you believe the damage to be minimal. Our dentistry team will professionally assess the severity of the tooth injury and explain your various treatment options.
What causes teeth to chip or crack?
Despite the fact that our teeth are covered in hard, mineralised enamel, there are several ways in which they can chip, crack or break. These include:
- Sports injuries
- Facial trauma following an accident or assault
- Untreated cavities that cause the tooth to become brittle and break
- Teeth grinding or clenching of your teeth
- Habitual chewing or biting your pen/fingernails
- Biting into hard foods
- Old fillings where the remaining structure of the tooth has become brittle over time.
How can I tell if I’ve cracked a tooth?
Teeth can crack in a number of ways, from one straight crack to multiple small cracks across the surface. They can also crack completely in two. Some cracks are immediately obvious, while others may be barely visible. If you’re unsure if you’ve sustained a crack in your tooth, here are some signs to look out for:
- Pain or discomfort during chewing, which may come and go
- Pain when you release the bite
- Sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures and/or sweetness
- Swelling of the gum around the affected tooth
What should I do if I’ve cracked my tooth?
If a piece of tooth has broken off, put it in a container with milk or your saliva and bring it to us. You should always contact us as soon as possible if you’ve suffered trauma or a blow to the mouth as we’ll need to check for damage to the surrounding teeth, lips and cheeks. You can use our emergency dental number [xxx] to make a same-day appointment.
What happens if a cracked/chipped tooth is left untreated?
If you’ve sustained a chip or a crack in any other way, you should still contact us for an assessment within a day or two. If left untreated, a cracked/chipped tooth may fracture even further and is likely to cause you pain or sensitivity. A crack in the tooth also leaves you vulnerable to bacteria and infection.
How are chipped teeth treated?
We have a range of treatments available for cracked/chipped teeth at Sleep Dentistry Melbourne. After a consultation, your dentist will be able to advise you on the most appropriate one for you. We’ll first assess the size of the chip or fracture, the health of the tooth, any functional or aesthetic concerns you may have, as well as your budget.
Our treatments include:
- Buffing down the rough edges of the tooth so they don’t aggravate other teeth, your jaw or your cheeks. This is ideal for small chips that have damaged the enamel only.
- Precise colour composite bonding to restore tooth structure. At Sleep Dentistry Melbourne, we can closely match the bonding to your natural tooth colour so you don’t even notice the difference. This treatment is non-invasive as it doesn’t require any of the healthy parts of the tooth to be removed.
- Using long-lasting CEREC porcelain fillings or caps to fill the gaps caused by larger cracks. These can also be precisely matched to your tooth colour.
If you’ve chipped or cracked a tooth, give us a call on 1300 275 337 to discuss the different ways we can restore the appearance of your smile.