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What to Know if You Have a Cracked Tooth: Dentist in Spring Texas:
As far as our teeth are concerned, we always think of them as being tough and difficult to break or crack. This is because, from science class in elementary school, we were taught that the enamel, which is the thin outer covering of the tooth, is actually the hardest tissue in the human body. With this in mind, we usually think that our teeth are near indestructible and folks can be seen even opening bottle caps using their teeth. However, as tough as they are, it is actually easier than you think to crack a tooth.
There are a number of situations that can leave you with a cracked tooth such as accidents involving a blow to the mouth, grinding or clenching of teeth as seen in people with bruxism, chewing on or biting hard objects such as hard candy, ice cubes and nuts or even due to the wear and tear of our teeth over time. Causes of cracked tooth are actually more common than you may think and they are actually the leading cause of tooth loss in the U.S and most countries out there, which I’m sure may be a bit surprising given how hard enamel is.
If you suffer from a cracked tooth, this article will look to highlight everything you need to know from the types of cracked teeth, to the symptoms and diagnosis and treatment.
Not all cases of cracked teeth are born the same as there are different types of cracked teeth depending on how the cracks appear on the affected tooth. One type of cracked tooth is a fractured cusp which usually occurs around a dental filling. Given that this sort of crack doesn’t affect the pulp of the tooth, it therefore doesn’t cause too much pain. Another type of cracked tooth is known as craze lines. Craze lines are cracks on the enamel of the tooth that are extremely small. These don’t cause any pain and also don’t require treatment.
Yet another type of tooth cracks are those cracks that extend into the gum line. With these tooth cracks, if the crack is a vertical one and extends through the tooth but has not reached the gum line yet, then the tooth is savable. On the other hand, if the crack extends through the teeth and also into the gum line, then the tooth may have to be extracted. If you have such a crack, you should seek immediate treatment as the sooner you are attended to, the better the chances of saving the tooth.
Another type of crack is a split tooth, where the crack extends through the surface of the tooth and below the gum line. This crack is usually so severe, that the tooth can be separated into two portions. If you have such a crack, it may be impossible to save the whole of the tooth, although your dentist may be able to save a portion of it if you seek treatment promptly. The final type of tooth crack is known as a vertical tooth fracture and it begins below the gum line and travels upward. With this crack, you won’t present with any symptoms, including pain, unless you suffer infection in the affected tooth. If you have such a crack, the tooth will most likely have to be removed.
Having highlighted the different types of cracks, that will help you at least identify which crack you have, the next thing we are going to do is highlight the symptoms of a cracked tooth. As you may have gathered from the above discussion, not all cases of a cracked tooth will have symptoms, but if it does, some of the common symptoms include pain when chewing, biting, as well as pain that comes and goes and isn’t continuous. Other symptoms include swelling of the gum around the cracked tooth as well as sensitivity to cold, heat and even sweetness. Another thing worth keeping in mind as far as what you need to know if you have a cracked tooth is concerned, is that it is important to note that not all cases of cracks are visible to the eye and some may even not show up on dental x-rays.
Therefore, if you have a cracked tooth, you should keep count of the things that are causing you pain such as heat, cold as well as if eating certain foods be they sweet, sticky or sour, causes you pain. You should also try and see if you can pinpoint the site of the pain. This will help your dentist in diagnosing the problem. As far as diagnosis at the dentist’s office goes, the dentist may use techniques such as using a magnifying lens to identify tiny cracks, running a dental explorer over and around the tooth to see if they can feel for it, use a dental dye to make the crack more visible, probe for inflammation in your gums to see if they can identify vertical cracks, among others.
When it comes to the treatment of cracked teeth, one thing you should know if you have a cracked tooth is that the treatment will depend on the size and location of your crack, whether or not it extends into your gum line as well as your symptoms. There are a number of treatment options available as far as treating cracked teeth go and they include dental bonding, dental crowns as well as root canals for extensive cracks that extend into and damage the pulp of the tooth. In severe cases, extraction of the affected tooth may be the only way to go about things. For tine, hairline cracks on the enamel, the dentist may recommend that you leave them alone, especially if they are not visible to the naked eye and as such aren’t affecting the appearance of the affected tooth.
For the folks of Spring Texas, another thing to know if you have a cracked tooth is that the best place to go for diagnosis and treatment is over at the highly regarded Dentist Spring Tx.
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