There are many ways to acquire a fractured or a cracked tooth. In order to prevent this from happening, it is important to know how to prevent knocked out teeth. This article is going to tackle the cause and effects of fractured teeth, the importance of maintaining a strong set of teeth, and how to avoid tooth problems.
What Causes A Cracked Tooth?
Teeth tend to crack due to too much pressure caused by teeth grinding, gnashing, or clenching. People commonly do this unconsciously during sleep. If this condition is severe, it can cause damages to the teeth, gum line, and other jaw disorders. Consult your dentist immediately and ask for advice on how to avoid teeth damages caused by teeth grinding. Or if possible, find ways to slowly decrease your teeth grinding by seeking professional help.
A cracked tooth can also be caused by excessive chewing or biting hard foods. Some of the foods to avoid in order to prevent a cracked tooth are candies, peanuts, ice, corn on the cob, taco shells, and many more.
Drinking hot drinks and suddenly consuming cold drinks or vice versa can also damage the teeth making it fragile and easy to break. It is advised to take a 3-5 minute interval before drinking another liquid with a different temperature. This will give the teeth some time to cool down and return to its normal temperature.
Tooth fillings can damage your teeth. The strength of the tooth gets frail if it’s too large or wide. It slowly weakens the teeth and damages it in the long run leading to a cracked tooth.
Accidents, injuries, fistfights, and likes are the most common reasons for a cracked tooth. This may cause fractured cusps and cracked teeth that would need immediate root canal treatment to avoid further damages. Severe cases caused by these accidents might require tooth extraction.
Old age also plays a huge role in acquiring a cracked tooth. This is caused by periodontal diseases involving receding gum lines, deteriorating jawbone, and wobbly teeth. Oftentimes, this happens to people over 50 years old.
Types of Cracked Tooth
- Vertical root fracture. This is a rare crack that starts from the gum line and moves upward causing a cracked tooth. This usually doesn’t show any signs of symptoms unless the teeth get infected with bacterias.
- Fractured cusp. This crack does not cause much pain, it usually happens on teeth with dental fillings but doesn’t directly affect the soft center of the tooth.
- Cracks extended into the gum line. It is better to always have your cracked teeth examined right away to prevent this condition from happening. In some cases, the crack gets big enough to reach the gum line, when this occurs, prompt extraction or a root canal treatment would be needed.
- Craze lines. This is a common condition that does not necessarily need any treatment. Craze lines are very tiny cracks on the outer part of the teeth.
- Split tooth. This is a type of crack that could split a tooth into 2 or more segments. When this happens, the crack reaches the gum line giving the patient an excruciating pain. The dentist may be able to save a portion of the teeth but most of the time. A root canal treatment will no longer be a recommended solution but a total tooth extraction.
Repairing A Cracked Tooth
If the crack is minimal and does not cause any pain, it’s possible for the teeth to self-heal. However, if it is causing too much agony, it’s best to consult a dentist for more accurate treatment. The dentist will first try to identify the severity of the crack to come up with the best solution.
Different Ways to Repair A Cracked Tooth
Dental bonding or filling. Bonding is a simple procedure used to bond a tooth. The dentist would first cover the surface of the tooth with a gel to harden the teeth. Afterward, an adhesive material will be applied to the tooth to be followed by a tooth-colored resin making the bonding material look natural.
Using a dental cap or crown is a common solution to teeth with large cracks and damage. If a part of the tooth falls off, the dentist may be able to retain the remaining parts of the tooth by covering it with a crown or tooth-shaped cap. This will help in protecting the affected tooth and improve its aesthetic appearance. Root canal therapy may be executed first before proceeding to this procedure. Dental caps and crowns are usually made of metal, all-resin, all-ceramic, or porcelain incorporated into a metal. Metal crowns are the strongest option while crowns and caps made of porcelain and ceramic give a more natural look.
A broken front tooth may need a dental veneer. Dental veneers are made of porcelain or resin composite materials that cover the cracked tooth. In order to have a properly fitted veneer, the dentist will remove 0.3 to 1.2 mm of enamel from the surface of the tooth. Then a dental professional will try to copy the broken tooth which will then be placed in front of the tooth making it look natural and whole again.
If the tooth crack is large is too large that it exposes the pulp, a root canal therapy would be highly suggested. This is to prevent the mouth bacterias from entering and affecting the pulp. Pulp tissues can die due to infections which may lead to tooth extractions. The root canal therapy procedure includes cleaning the root canal and sealing it.
Maintaining A Strong Set Of Teeth
We use our teeth in our daily lives. Proper caring for teeth will benefit you in so many ways, it can help you speak clearly and confidently. A strong set of teeth also leads to a more productive and happier life. Just feeling a little ounce of pain in the teeth can ruin what’s supposed to be a good day. It is essential in enjoying our meals and appreciating the food at our table. Plus, it gives a more appealing and pleasant physical appearance attributing to one’s self-confidence.
So how do we maintain healthy and strong teeth? Below are some of the most important things to follow;
- Brushing the teeth 2-3 times a day. The most basic part of maintaining healthy teeth is taught to everyone since childhood. Regular brushing of teeth has proven to be an effective way of fighting cavities and other oral problems.
- Use toothpaste with fluoride. Fluoride is a mineral that’s essential in strengthening the enamel. It can be found on soil, water, rocks, air, and plants.
- Flossing the teeth. There are small parts and gaps in the teeth that toothbrushes cannot clean. Regular flossing at least once a day will help in removing the food particles stuck in between the teeth and gums.
- Avoid constant consumption of acidic drinks such as soft drinks and fruit juices. Food containing acid can damage the teeth by softening the teeth leading to holes which then may result in the teeth being eaten down to the gum. You may also want to limit the intake of foods rich in sugar because bacterias in the teeth can turn the sugar into acid.
- Protecting the teeth from injuries. Athletes are required to wear a mouthguard or a helmet in order to avoid teeth injuries. If you are into extreme physical activities and action, it would be best to wear these things too.
- Avoid using your teeth other than eating and chewing. Opening a bottle of beer, cracking a peanut shell, or even ripping a package using your teeth can damage the teeth and cause tooth cracking.
- See your dentist regularly. Visiting your dentist twice a year or every after 6 months for a regular dental check-up will help in identifying early signs of a cracked tooth. Some tooth crack can be very tiny and may not show symptoms in the early stages.