Prevent cracks and preserve teeth with tailored care and restorative treatments
Trauma to a tooth may be hard to miss. You may break or even knock out your tooth due to a fall, accident, or sports injury. Sometimes, however, a cracked tooth is far more insidious.
Only our experienced team at Los Alamitos Dental Care in Los Alamitos, California, will know for sure how to “save” or repair your cracked tooth. And that starts by understanding the true nature and extent of the damage to your tooth. Just because you do not feel any pain or notice anything different about your smile does not mean your mouth is healthy. There could be damage lurking underneath that warrants prompt attention to avoid further damage and, potentially, the loss of a tooth.
The fact that so many dental and oral problems can be asymptomatic until after the damage has been done underscores the importance of maintaining regular visits to our office. You should also refrain from “sitting” on any changes. We offer emergency care and strive to see patients with urgent needs quickly. Some potential signs of cracks or fractures of the teeth include:
- Intermittent pain
- Sudden new tooth sensitivity
- A persistent toothache
- Jarring pain after biting down
- Pain that lingers even after the “trigger” has been removed
- Noticeable swelling around the troublesome tooth
In addition to more “acute” trauma resulting from sports-related oral injuries, breakage to the teeth can arise due to chronic conditions. For instance, patients may habitually grind their teeth and clench their jaws. These behaviors place excessive force on the teeth and dental work. If enamel erosion or more severe dental decay goes untreated, the tooth is weakened and vulnerable to cracking. In some cases, we can prevent or stave off further damage with oral appliance therapy. Depending on your needs, a custom nightguard or sports mouthguard may be made and worn to keep your vulnerable teeth and supportive tissues intact.
For those with existing cracks, not all breakage is the same. But understanding the type of crack and its severity informs how our dentists treat your teeth and, as needed, bring relief to an aching mouth. Take, for instance, “craze lines.” These small cracks may be of cosmetic concern but are otherwise harmless. We can discuss procedures such as dental bonding and veneers to cover these imperfections and add a little strength to the enamel.
Deeper cracks, however, can make the innermost pulp tissue susceptible to irreparable damage. When this type of deep inflammation or infection occurs, the tooth may not always be preserved with root canal therapy and other endodontic procedures. The tooth would be lost. The sooner that you can get in to see us and that our dentists can assess your teeth, the better off you will be. We may be able to “catch” and repair the crack before it leads to a severe infection that results in the loss of the tooth, and all it may take is the addition of a dental restoration to build up the weak tooth.
Call (562) 539-0011 without delay to schedule your appointment at Los Alamitos Dental Care. Our office also accommodates urgent needs with high-quality emergency dentistry.