A broken tooth can be a big problem that demands immediate attention, or it can seem like a small issue that can wait. Here’s the reality: A broken tooth is a big problem, no matter what size it is. Left unaddressed, this kind of damage will lead to bigger oral health complications and more invasive dental restorations. At Smiles by the Sea in Hampton, NH, we want to see you right away if you have a broken tooth.
Repairs for a Broken Tooth
There are many possible solutions for repairing a broken tooth. The fix your Hampton dentist chooses will depend on the urgency of your situation and the severity of the break. Here are some of the possible dental restorations:
- Tooth-colored filling: A minor break in a tooth can still allow in bacteria and food particles, which could cause decay or an infection deep within the tooth. A tooth-colored filling is designed to preserve as much of your natural tooth as possible. Made of a composite material, this resin is strong, long-lasting, durable, and customized to match the color of your tooth enamel for a strong repair.
- Dental bonding: Similar to tooth-colored fillings, dental bonding is an option when the break is on the surface of the tooth and does not require any drilling. This non-invasive procedure is fast and easy and is often a great solution for tending to a cosmetic issue.
- Porcelain crown: When your broken tooth is so compromised that the damage is too large or deep to be repaired by a filling, a porcelain crown can be customized to cover the entire tooth. This restoration repairs the tooth while also beautifying it and allowing it to blend in with the rest of your smile. Depending on the size of the break, you may need root canal therapy first before the tooth is covered by the crown.
- Inlay or onlay: For a medium-sized break, an inlay or onlay may be the appropriate solution. If a crown is too large of a repair but a filling perhaps isn’t enough, an inlay covers the top of a tooth while an onlay covers the top and at least one cusp. An onlay is often called a partial crown. These restorations stabilize the tooth structure and beautify a tooth too.
- Extraction: A tooth that is badly broken, sometimes all the way down to the root, will need to be extracted. Your Hampton dentist will do everything possible to avoid extraction – saving the natural tooth is always the primary goal – but sometimes this choice is necessary to eliminate pain and prevent further dental complications from developing. After the extraction area has healed, the missing tooth can be replaced with a dental implant, dental bridge, or other restoration.
Causes of a Broken Tooth
There are many possible causes of a broken tooth:
- Car accident
- Sports injury
- Blow to the mouth
- Biting down wrong
- Using teeth as a tool
- Deteriorating dental work
- Teeth grinding
- Weak tooth enamel
The cause of your broken tooth matters because if it comes from something like teeth grinding, for example, your dentist will also want to correct this habit with something like a mouth guard to prevent the problem from occurring again.
A Customized Repair for Your Broken Tooth
When you visit Smiles by the Sea, our dental team will discuss all viable dental restorations with you until we settle on the best solution for your broken tooth. The goal is to correct the existing problem, eliminate pain, and prevent further deterioration or breaks. Schedule your appointment at our Hampton, NH, dental office. If you are experiencing a dental emergency, contact us immediately at (603) 506-4390.