Cracking can happen to any part of a tooth. Such cracks may at times be visible. However, this is not for all cases of cracks within teeth. A cracked tooth can simply be defined as a broken tooth.
Types Of Teeth Cracks
1. Cracked Tooth
This occurs when a crack is formed on the surface of a tooth. This crack runs down to the root of a tooth. It may end up below the gum line.
2. Craze Lines
These cracks usually affect the outer enamel. They are tiny cracks that cause no pain. Common in adults, these cracks need no treatment.
3. Cracked Cusp
The cusp of a tooth is the pointed part within a tooth. A damaged cusp may lead to the breaking of a tooth. Pain can be experienced during bites.
4. Split Tooth
This happens as a result of a cracked tooth not being treated. Splitting of the tooth occurs into two parts. They start with the root heading towards the surface of the tooth.
Why Teeth Crack?
There are various reasons as to why teeth may crack including:
1. Tooth grinding can lead to teeth cracking. Immense pressure during these times may form cracks within teeth.
2. Large filling within teeth leads to teeth becoming weak. This, in turn, results in the cracking of teeth. They interfere with the teeth’s integrity.
3. Physical injuries such as accidents and falls can also cause teeth to crack. Fights that result in blows to one’s mouth can also cause cracks. These blows are usually directed at one’s lower jaw or chin.
4. Chewing hard substances and foods can also lead to cracks. Ice, nuts, hard candy and meat bones are some of the items that can cause cracks.
5. Gum disease may lead to one’s teeth cracking. This is usually as a result of bone loss. Root fractures may be suffered during this process.
6. Abrupt changes in temperature may result in cracks. When the mouth experience these changes, contractions, and expansions occur. These may lead to teeth cracking.
How To Tell If My Tooth Is Cracked?
When one’s tooth is cracked, there are a variety of symptoms that will be experienced. Pain while chewing food and when releasing the force of biting may be felt.
Pain is also felt when a tooth comes into contact with extreme temperatures. Extreme cold temperature may lead to such pain. Swelling of the gum may also occur when one’s tooth is cracked.
Bad breath may also be present. Sore neck glands is also another symptom that one may have a cracked tooth. A dentist is more suited in finding out the reasons for you experiencing pain and discomfort within your teeth.
Treatment And Fixing A Cracked Tooth
Fixing is usually dependent on where a crack is located. It also depends on the crack size and whether or not the crack has an extension to the mouth’s gum line.
The symptoms that you are experiencing are also key in determining how a crack will be fixed. These factors will guide your dentist in recommending the best option for fixing a cracked tooth including:
A crack is usually filled using a plastic resin. It helps in the restoration of the shape of a tooth. This can be used to repair the edges of a tooth that are cracked.
2. Cosmetic Contouring
This is ideal for small chips. Cracks are dealt with by rounding and polishing them. This bends away any cracks that are present on the edges of a tooth.
This is a thin layer of plastic or porcelain. It is fitted onto the surface of a tooth. A fair part of a tooth has to be removed for veneers to be placed. This, therefore, means that one has to have a decent part of a tooth present. This method of fixing a cracked tooth is long lasting.
These are ideal for teeth which are not suited for veneers. It is able to fit over and replace what is left from a crack. It leaves the desired look of natural teeth. It also makes teeth strong.
Root canal treatment may be required if the nerve of a tooth is damaged and infected. This treatment encompasses the removal of infection within the canal of the root.
Cleaning and filling of the root happen thereafter. This prevents any infections from occurring. A crown is then fitted to provide support to a tooth.
Tooth removal may also be the best course of action. This happens when the roots and nerves are completely damaged. Extraction may be the only option left.
6. No Treatment
Tiny cracks may be present on the enamel of teeth. Such cracks may not affect the appearance of teeth. Additionally, they may also not produce any pain. They can be left alone.
It is very important for you to take great care of your teeth. This will improve your overall oral health. Foods and substances that may lead to the cracking of teeth should be avoided. You may need to see your dentist for diagnosis in case you feel any of the symptoms associated with cracked teeth.