A cracked tooth is typically a result of an unplanned dental trauma. Whether you bit down on something too hard at lunch or suffered a bad fall at the neighborhood pool, teeth are subject to chip, break or fracture under excessive force or pressure. While a chipped tooth can be easy to detect, a crack in a tooth can be much less obvious. In fact, not everyone can feel a cracked tooth, especially when it is a hairline crack. However, leaving any type of dental damage untreated can be a serious mistake. Even a tiny, hairline crack on your back molar needs to be repaired – and here’s why!
Understanding why a cracked tooth needs treatment requires understanding the anatomy of a tooth. When the enamel (or outer layer) of a tooth becomes damaged, it loses its most powerful protection. The next layer, called dentin, contains tiny pathways that lead to the center pulp of the tooth. This pulp is where your tooth houses its nerves. Therefore, without the enamel layer in top condition, bacteria and plaque can penetrate the inner layers of your tooth and cause painful sensitivity, decay and infection around the nerves. A crack in your tooth enamel is enough to compromise the health of the entire tooth. In fact, the tooth may eventually weaken enough to break or chip if not fixed by your dentist in a timely manner.
Repairing Cracked Teeth
There is not a “one-size-fits-all” solution when it comes to restoring a cracked tooth. It depends on the severity and location of the tooth crack. For most patients, cracked teeth can be fixed with a simple procedure called bonding. Bonding can be performed with composite resin, which is a tooth-colored material that is both durable and natural-looking. Dental bonding is a quick, cost-effective and painless solution to save your cracked tooth from further damage and discomfort.
More substantial tooth cracks, or those that have been neglected for a longer period of time, may require a root canal, dental crown or other restorative procedure. This may be necessary if a larger portion of the tooth structure is compromised or if there is an infection present. Regardless of what your cracked tooth demands, you should know that the procedure is worth it. In fact, it could save your tooth from eventually dying or breaking off at the root.
For a trusted family dentist that offers excellence in cracked tooth repair, call Marietta Dental Professionals. We know what it takes to protect and repair your smile through all stages of life!