Even though our teeth’ enamel is among the strongest tissues in our body, it can still be vulnerable to breakage and chipping. Aside from the benefits of having straight teeth, a smile free from cracks or breakages are also important. A fractured tooth can happen due to a variety of reasons. Injuries, hard knocks to the face, improper use of teeth, or even biting down on hard food can all cause a chipped front tooth. If you happen to experience some of these concerns, this article is for you. Continue reading to learn more.
Chipped Front Tooth: An Overview
In a lot of ways, we tend to subject our teeth to misuse and abuse. So, it’s not surprising to see some degree of chips or cracks occurring in our front teeth. As a result, the tooth surface becomes jagged, sharp, sensitive, and unsightly.
Many people tend to worry more about how a chip in their front tooth affects their appearance. Sure, a chipped tooth can be unsightly, but do you know it can also cause unbearable pain if neglected or mistreated?
When we subject our teeth to blunt pressure, it can cause microtrauma. This condition causes gradual and accumulative damage to our oral health. Therefore, if you have noticed some chipping in your front tooth, it is best to see a dentist as soon as possible.
Types of Chipped Tooth
Here are some of the several types of fractured teeth:
The fracture in your tooth might sometimes start at the root and progress upward. This sort of break is usually painful and necessitates extraction.
There are many roots at the rear of your mouth’s molars. In a split tooth, your tooth has broken vertically into two distinct pieces.
The pointy chewing surfaces on the top of the teeth are known as cusps. These can chip, resulting in alignment problems or sharp edges.
How To Diagnose a Chipped Tooth?
If you have a chipped or broken tooth, you will notice that a portion of your teeth is missing. The area where the tooth is missing will be sharp and jagged; most likely, you’ll be in pain. You can detect a chipped tooth by simply running your finger or tongue over your front teeth. Additionally, a chipped tooth’s surrounding region may be particularly sensitive to heat and cold.
I Have a Chipped Tooth! What Should I Do?
While it is important to visit your dentist as early as possible, it may take several days before you can manage to set your appointment. Until you can go to your dentist for restoration and repair, it is best to care for your chipped tooth to avoid further damages.
In the meantime, you must rinse your mouth to get rid of any leftover debris that could cause infection or irritations in the wound. You can also use dental wax or temporary bonding material to protect your mouth from the irritation caused by the sharp edges of a chipped tooth. These items are available at any local drugstore or pharmacy. It also comes with instructions that you can follow for proper usage.
If you feel discomfort and inflammation, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever such as Ibuprofen. This medicine will relax your muscles and allow you to rest. If you opt to go for something more natural, perhaps a clove oil can help you numb the area around your chipped tooth. You can also apply an ice pack along the area where you feel discomfort.
Prevent Further Damage
You should stick to soft foods until you fix your chipped tooth. Also, wearing a protective mouthguard can help if you’re fond of playing sports or have a tendency to grind your teeth when you sleep.
Potential Risks for Chipped Teeth
A chipped tooth needs treatment since it might lead to more complications in the future. Here are some of the issues that a chipped tooth might result in:
Nerve Exposure and Damage
Damage or exposure of nerves in the teeth is the worst that could happen when you have a chipped front tooth. This situation is more prevalent in children as the younger tooth tends to have its nerve closer to the tooth’s outer surface.
Bacterial contamination is possible whenever a nerve undergoes exposure. Once bacteria have entered the tooth’s interior chamber, the only method to get rid of them is to have all blood vessels and nerve tissue removed via a root canal procedure.
A cavity is more likely to form when a chip causes the whole enamel covering to be lost, exposing the tooth’s inner structure.
Enamel is the exterior layer of a tooth’s surface. Dentin is a softer, slightly yellow material that makes up the bulk of the tooth. Dentin is weaker than enamel, making it more vulnerable to a bacterial attack that can lead to cavities.
Similarly, dentin is far more vulnerable to acid erosion in the mouth. Since dentin dissolves faster than enamel under an acidic pH level, acid erosion can take place. However, it is more common for those who drink acidic beverages throughout the day and have GERD.
Further Chipping and Broken Tooth
You’re at risk of additional damage even if your tooth has only a slight chip. Any signs of cracked or jagged edges are more prone to affect neighbouring teeth and cause further chipping. Moreover, an adjacent tooth can develop a jagged edge as it touches each other when grinding or chewing. Under that kind of force, the edge is most likely to break off.
How Do You Fix a Chipped Tooth?
Your dentist will determine the type of treatment to restore a chipped tooth by the size of the chip. The following dental treatments are the most common repair options to help you restore your smile.
A dental crown is a restoration procedure that covers a tooth’s visible areas. Dentists prefer crowns to restore teeth to their natural shapes for both appearance and function. Porcelain crowns are perfect for those looking for ways to cover chipping in the front teeth and when there isn’t enough structure for a filling.
A veneer works like a crown, which gives your teeth a better aesthetic appearance. However, it can only cover the visible surface of a tooth, which serves more for a cosmetic than a practical purpose. A veneer would cover the rest of the exposed surface of a chipped tooth and restore the missing portion, creating a seamless look.
For minor chips in the dentin and enamel, filling with a tooth-coloured mixture that binds to the surrounding area is possible. We can fit and integrate these filling materials into a natural tooth structure very precisely.
According to experts, this treatment is the most conservative approach for repairing broken teeth. Although, it also comes with the highest risk of breakage, especially if the pressures that produced the chipping persist.
Even the tiniest chipping may cause some irritation to your tongue. Therefore, it is best to recontour the region. We can produce a smooth surface and decrease the chance of additional chipping by smoothing and polishing the region using a dental handpiece, eliminating any jagged or rough edges.
Bonding is a popular way of repairing broken or chipped teeth, particularly minor or simple chips. Dental bonding involves moulding a composite material to cover the chipped area:
- The dentist will roughen the remaining enamel to make sure that the composite adheres properly.
- Attachment and shaping of the bond take place to create a natural-looking coverage over the area.
- The dentist will use a blue light to harden the substance and establish bonding.
Bonds can last for up to a decade if properly cared for.
Root Canal Treatment
Your dentist may prescribe a root canal treatment if the rest of your tooth has broken off, but the root is still intact. This procedure involves inserting a pin or post into the canal of your tooth to strengthen the structure. It will also allow a temporary crown to fit before a permanent one is bonded over the post to restore your smile.
Leading Dental Restoration Clinic
If you happen to have a chipped front tooth, it is best to see a dentist as soon as possible. Your dental care provider can repair a damaged tooth in a variety of methods, including caps, veneers, and crowns. Your dentist can provide you the best course of treatment and options to restore your smile.
At Dentistry on Solent, we offer a wide range of dental restoration to fix a chipped front tooth. We strive hard to exceed patient expectations; that’s why our dentists undergo sufficient training and certifications, so you’re sure to get the best possible treatment available.
If you’re anywhere near Norwest, be sure to visit our clinic and have a personalised treatment plan that will fit your needs. For more information, please don’t hesitate to call us at (02) 9159 3783. You can also book your appointment through our website.