Throughout medieval times and the early pioneer days, there were certain dental conditions that were much more difficult to fix than they are today. Nowadays, dentists have procedures for fixing virtually any type of dental issue, especially when it comes to making teeth look more aesthetically-pleasing. One of the most common types of dental issues that people tend to suffer from are broken teeth.
What Is a Broken Tooth?
A broken tooth is different from a chipped or cracked one. Whereas cracked teeth have cracks running through them and chipped teeth simply have little chips in them, a broken tooth is when the tooth is actually broken off. Broken teeth usually have larger chunks of the tooth come off than a chipped tooth does and is also much more noticeable than a chipped tooth. A broken tooth can cause patients to have lower self-esteem due to the fact that they result in a flawed smile, especially if the tooth is located near the front of the mouth where it’s clearly visible when speaking or smiling. Broken teeth might be accompanied by pain or discomfort, especially if it is severely broken and some nerve endings are exposed. In these cases you may need a emergency dental care to provide immediate relief and reassurance that it can be repaired properly.
Causes of a Broken Tooth
There are numerous causes for broken teeth, some of which include sporting injuries, falls, biting down on something hard like ice, receiving a blow to the face or simply having a decayed tooth that is already weakened from decay and finally breaks. In most cases, people will instantly be aware that they have a broken tooth because they’ll likely feel the tooth break off and will also feel the broken off piece of bone in their mouths. Once people feel the piece of broken tooth in their mouths, they should immediately remove it and preserve it by placing it within a milk solution so that they can take it to their dentists. However, in cases when the broken piece is accidentally lost, thrown away or swallowed, there is no need to worry because there are ways that dentist can fix a broken tooth without having the broken off piece.
Ways to Fix a Broken Tooth
Usually, the first way that dentists will attempt to fix a broken tooth is by reattaching the broken piece back onto the offending tooth. However, if nerves are exposed, then dentists might not always be able to reattach the piece, even if the patient has preserved the broken piece of tooth. The next method for fixing a broken tooth is through dental bonding. During this process, the dentist applies a bonding material to the tooth and then shapes and smoothes it out so that it takes on the appearance of the natural tooth. This is commonly performed on broken teeth for patients that didn’t retain the pieces that broke off from their teeth. In cases where a full bonding treatment isn’t necessary, dentists might fill the broken tooth with a filling.
In cases where the broken tooth has a lot of decay, then the dentist might simply fill down the tooth and then cover it with a cap or crown to give the tooth an even appearance with the surrounding teeth. Still, in cases where the broken tooth doesn’t have any nerve endings exposed and doesn’t really give the patient any pain, dentists might suggest placing dental veneers over the tooth to give the patient an aesthetically-pleasing smile that is even again.
Perhaps the most serious type of broken tooth is one that requires a root canal to be performed. If a tooth is so broken that it’s exposing the pulp, which is the part of the tooth that contains the nerves and blood vessels, then the tooth might require a root canal. Usually, in order for a tooth to expose the pulp, it must be broken at least halfway up the tooth or even more. An emergency root canal may be necessary, thankfully there are dentist open 24 hours that can help.
Harvard Health Publications. “When teeth get damaged.” Retrieved on February 10, 2016, from http://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/when-teeth-get-damaged.
WorldDental.org. “Emergency broken tooth repair: Time to see an emergency dentist.” Retrieved on February 10, 2016, from http://worldental.org/teeth/emergency-broken-tooth-repair/.
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