Don't ignore that crack
Teeth crack because of avariety of issues, includingpressure from teeth grindingand fillings so large theyweaken the integrity of thetooth. (Photos: Pexels)

A tooth fracture is a break or crack in the hard shell of the tooth. The outer shell of the tooth is called the enamel. It protects the softer, inner pulp of the tooth. The inner pulp contains nerves and blood vessels.

Teeth crack because of a variety of issues, including:

•Pressure from teeth grinding

•Fillings so large they weaken the integrity of the tooth

•Chewing or biting hard foods, such as ice, nuts, or hard candy

•Blows to the mouth, such as might happen with a car accident, sporting injury, fall, or even a fistfight

•Abrupt changes in temperature in the mouth — for instance, from eat something extremely hot and then trying to cool your mouth with ice water

•Age, with most teeth cracks occurring in people over 50

Not every cracked tooth will produce symptoms. But when it does, common ones include:

•Pain when chewing or biting, especially when you release the bite

•Sensitivity to heat, cold, or sweetness

•Pain that comes and goes, but is rarely continuous

•Swelling of the gum around the affected tooth

It is, however, important to not ignore a cracked tooth and get it examined by your dentist. Treatment depends on the size of the crack, where it's located, your symptoms, and whether the crack extends into the gum line. Depending on those factors, your dentist may recommend one of the following:

Bonding

In this procedure, your dentist uses a plastic resin to fill the crack, restoring its look and function.

Crown

A dental crown is a prosthetic device usually made of porcelain or ceramic. It fits over the damaged tooth or caps it. To fit a crown, your dentist first shaves off some enamel from your tooth to make room for the crown in your mouth. They then make an impression of the tooth, pick out a colour that matches your teeth, and send the impression off to a dental lab to make the crown. This process may take a couple of weeks. When the crown returns, your dentist fits and cements it over your cracked tooth. With advances in technology, some dentists can mill a porcelain crown right in the office and place it that day. With proper care, a crown can last a lifetime.

Root canal

When a crack is so extensive it extends into the pulp, your dentist, or a specialist such as an oral surgeon or endodontist, will recommend a root canal to remove damaged pulp and restore some integrity to the tooth. This procedure can prevent the tooth from becoming infected or weakening further.

Extraction

When the structure of the tooth, and the nerves and roots that lie below it, are very damaged, removing the tooth maybe your only option.

No treatment

Many people have tiny, hairline cracks in the enamel of their teeth. If these cracks don't affect appearance and don't produce pain, your doctor may advise leaving them alone.

Moreover, if you're concerned about your cracked tooth, you need to visit your dentist

Dr Sharon Robinson's office, The Dental Place Cosmestix Spa is located at Winchester Business Center Shop #5. You can contact us at 876 630 4710 or WhatsApp 876 441 4872. You can also get social with us on Instagram: @Dentalcosmetixspa and Facebook: DentalCosmetixspa

It isimportantto not ignore acracked tooth andto get it examinedby yourdentist.

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