Do you have a cracked tooth?
When you bite down, you feel a sharp pain, it quickly disappears and perhaps you ignore it.You avoid certain foods or chew only on one side of your mouth. Does this sound familiar?
If so, you may have a cracked tooth.
Unlike teeth with obvious fractures, teeth with cracked tooth syndrome usually have fractures that are too small to even be seen on X-rays. Sometimes the fracture is below the gum-line, making it even more
difficult to identify.
Why does a cracked tooth hurt?
A cracked tooth may hurt because the pressure of biting causes the crack to open. When you stop biting, the pressure is released and a sharp pain results as the crack quickly closes.
Even though the crack might be microscopic, when it opens, the pulp inside the tooth may become irritated. The pulp is the soft tissue
that contains the tooth’s nerves and blood vessels. If the pulp becomes diseased as a result of the crack, root canal treatment may
be necessary to save the tooth.
Treatment for cracked teeth
1. Simple Crack: The majority of cracked teeth can be treated by placement of a simple crown (cap) over the tooth. When the tooth is prepared for the crown, and a temporary restoration is placed, the pain usually leaves immediately. If this is the case with your tooth, we will place the final crown without a problem at your next appointment and the condition should be resolved.
2. Complex Crack: Occasionally, the tooth cracks into the pulp (nerve) of the tooth. If the pain persists after placement of the temporary crown, you may have a crack into the pulp of the affected tooth. Please call us. This tooth may require endodontic (root canal) therapy before the crown is permanently placed. This requires about one or two additional appointments before the final restorative crown is placed.
Treatment options may vary afterprofessional assessment based on your individual needs.
What causes cracks in teeth?
• Chewing on hard objects or foods such as ice, nuts or hard sweets
• Teeth that have undergone endodontic (root canal) therapy
• Accidents that result in a blow to the mouth
• Tooth grinding and clenching
• Uneven chewing pressure
• Loss of tooth structure from a large cavity, filling or other restoration
• Temperature extremes such as eating hot food and then drinking ice water
People who grind or clench their teeth may be more susceptible to cracked tooth syndrome because of the constant forces placed on their
teeth. Sometimes a person’s normal bite causes certain molar cusps (the highest points of the tooth) to exert so much pressure on the
opposing tooth that it cracks. Teeth with large fillings or teeth that have undergone root canal treatment are weaker than other teeth and may be more likely to crack.
Symptoms and signs are some or all of the following
• Pain when chewing
• Sensitivity to heat or cold
• No radiographic evidence of a problem causing the pain
• No dental decay present
• Easy verification of a crack when a tooth is prepared for a restoration
Cosmetic Porcelain Veneers
A minimally invasive dental treatment, Porcelain Veneers will enhance the appearance as well as the health of your smile. Created from ceramic materials, Porcelain Veneers have the ability to mimic natural tooth structure, meaning they are virtually indistinguishable in look and feel to your existing teeth.
Do you have any questions?
We are happy to answer any questions you may have. You may even like to schedule an appointment to further discuss which treatments would best suit your individual situation. We can then explain the options available, fees and timeframe to restore or renew your smile.
Dr David Moffet
Suite 31 & 32,
Parramatta Specialist Medical Building
152 Marsden Street
Parramatta NSW 2150
02 9891 5353