While broken teeth are quite common (and normal), they only make up about 5% of dental injuries. While that might not sound like a lot, it’s still never fun when you break a tooth and are in pain.
If you have a broken tooth, the good news is that there are treatment options. And the even better news is that many broken teeth treatment options are relatively easy to access.
In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the most common broken tooth treatment options and how to go about getting a healthy smile again.
Common Causes of Broken Teeth
The main causes of broken teeth are physical trauma, clenching and grinding, cavities, and gum disease.
Physical trauma is the most common cause of broken teeth, particularly in children. This can occur from falls, blows to the face, or car accidents. Wearing a mouthguard during contact sports can help protect your teeth from physical trauma.
Clenching and grinding are other common causes of broken teeth. This can happen during the day or at night and is often stress-related. In some cases, your dentist may recommend wearing a mouthguard at night if you tend to clench your teeth.
Cavities are another common cause of broken teeth. You can help prevent cavities by brushing and flossing regularly and visiting your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings.
Gum disease is another potential cause of broken teeth. This type of disease can damage the tissue that supports your teeth. If not treated, gum disease can lead to tooth loss and even damaged teeth.
When it comes down to it, regardless of the cause, it’s important to see a dentist right away if you have a broken tooth. They will be able to determine the best course of treatment.
How to Identify a Broken Tooth
Not sure if your tooth is broken or simply damaged? It’s important to understand how to identify a broken tooth so that you can explain to a dentist what the issue is. Based on what you’re feeling or how the tooth looks, they’ll be able to give you some broken tooth dental care tips.
There are several ways to identify a broken tooth. Here are some of the most common.
A broken tooth can be accompanied by pain, especially when pressure is applied to the area or when you bite down.
This is particularly the case if you notice a sharp pain when you inhale quickly. If that’s the case then it could be a sign that the roots of your tooth are showing and you need to visit a dentist immediately.
Continued sensitivity is another sign of a broken took. Most times, broken teeth are sensitive to hot or cold temperatures. However, you may also notice that your teeth feel different when you eat or drink something cold or hot.
If you have a broken tooth, you may see blood on your toothbrush or in your saliva. This is caused by the gums being irritated from the trauma surrounding where the tooth broke off.
Even without pain, you may be able to see that your tooth is cracked or chipped. In severe cases, the damage may be visible to the naked eye.
Is a Broken Tooth a Dental Emergency?
The simple answer is that it depends. If the break is minor and doesn’t involve the root of the tooth, then it probably isn’t an emergency. However, if the break is severe or if the tooth root is exposed then you should see a dentist as soon as possible.
In addition, if you have any pain or swelling, you should also seek dental care right away. While a broken tooth may not seem like a serious problem, it can actually lead to more serious dental and health problems if it isn’t treated promptly.
So if you’re not sure whether or not your tooth break is an emergency, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and see a dentist. Emergency dental care is quite accessible in most areas of the country even if you don’t have insurance.
Broken Tooth Treatment: What Are Your Options?
There are a few different options available for treating a broken tooth. Ultimately, the best course of action will depend on the severity of the break.
Your emergency dental care provider or your local dentist will be able to assess your situation and recommend the best treatment plan. However, here are some of the most common options.
Broken Tooth Extraction
In some cases, if the dental damage is extensive, your tooth may need to be extracted. This might sound like a painful procedure, but it’s often the best option to relieve pain and prevent further damage.
The first step in the process is to numb the area around the tooth to be extracted. A dentist will do this by injecting a local anesthetic into your gums. Once the area is numb, the dentist will extract the tooth and the roots.
After the procedure, you will need to care for the area to promote healing. This includes eating soft foods, avoiding tobacco products, and careful brushing and flossing. You may also need to take pain relievers to help relieve any discomfort.
Finally, they might eventually replace a tooth that has been extracted. Depending on where it is in your mouth, they might replace it with a fake tooth or try to reconstruct a tooth from scratch.
Root Canal & Dental Crown
Root canals and dental crowns are two of the most common options for treating a broken tooth.
Root canals involve removing the damaged nerve tissue from the tooth, cleaning the area, and then filling it with a special material.
Dental crowns involve placing a cap over the damaged tooth to protect it from further damage.
Root canals are usually more expensive than dental crowns, but they can often be done in one or two visits to the dentist. Dental crowns usually require two or more visits, and they may not be covered by insurance.
If you’re not sure which is better for you then consider the fact that root canals are usually considered to be a permanent solution. Dental crowns, however, may need to be replaced every five to ten years.
Dental implants are another option to replace a broken tooth.
This type of implant consists of a metal post that gets inserted into your jawbone. Once the post is in place, a dentist will reconstruct a tooth around that post.
Because they’re built around the metal post, dental implants are strong and durable. This means they can last for many years with proper care. In addition, dental implants look and feel like natural teeth, and they allow you to eat and speak normally.
Keep in mind that dental implants are usually more expensive than other tooth replacement options, though.
If your tooth isn’t too damaged then the best option for you might be a dental filling. This is usually the case if you’ve chipped off a side of your tooth (especially if it’s one in the back).
A dentist will use a special filling material to fill in the damaged area of the tooth and restore its shape and function. There are several different types of dental fillings available, including amalgam, composite, gold, and porcelain.
The good thing about this broken tooth treatment option is that in most cases, dental fillings can be completed in one visit to the dentist. However, more complex cases may require multiple visits.
Do keep in mind that dental fillings are not permanent and may need to be replaced over time.
Reshaping is a common treatment for minor chips and cracks. It’s a simple procedure that your dentist can usually do in one visit.
First, they’ll numb your tooth and gum with a local anesthetic. Then, they’ll use a drill, laser, or another abrasive tool to remove some of the tooth enamel. This will change the shape of the tooth and make it look smoother.
Finally, they may use a bonding agent to help improve the appearance of the treated tooth.
When it comes down to it, reshaping is usually a quick and painless procedure with little to no recovery time. However, it’s not always effective for more serious damage. In some cases, you may need to consider other options such as veneers or crowns.
Veneers are a type of dental restoration that uses a tooth-colored material to improve the appearance of the teeth. They can be used to close the spaces between the teeth, change the color of the teeth, or improve the shape of the teeth.
Of course, they’re also a great option for people with broken teeth. This is because they can provide both cosmetic and functional benefits. Veneers are also relatively easy to care for and can last for many years with proper upkeep.
So, if your broken teeth are due to grinding or simply weak and brittle enamel, then veneers might be a great option for you.
One of the options for broken tooth care is an onlay. Onlays are made of porcelain or composite resin and are used to restore a decayed or damaged tooth. They are usually custom-made to fit the tooth and are bonded to the tooth with dental adhesive.
In this case, they’re somewhat similar to veneers. However, onlays are larger than veneers and cover more of the tooth. They are typically used when there is more damage to the tooth, such as a large chip or crack.
A tooth splint is a device that is used to hold a fractured tooth in place so that it can heal properly. Tooth splints are usually made of metal or plastic and are attached to the tooth with dental adhesive.
In most cases, you’ll have to wear a tooth splint for several weeks in order to allow the tooth to heal properly. In some cases, a tooth splint may need to be worn for longer periods of time depending on the severity of the break.
Note that in this case, we’re talking about fractured teeth. If your tooth is fully broken then this might not be the most effective treatment method for you.
How Much Does Broken Tooth Care Cost?
If you have a broken tooth, you may be wondering how much it will cost to get it fixed. The good news is that there are a variety of options available, and the cost will depend on the:
- Severity of the break
- Type of treatment you choose,
- Type of dental insurance that you have
For a simple break, your dentist may be able to repair the tooth with a filling or bonding material. More serious breaks may require a crown or veneer. In some cases, a root canal may be necessary to save the tooth.
To give you a ballpark number, though, the average cost of a dental crown is about $500 to $3,000 per tooth. Dental implants, on the other hand, typically start at around $3,000 per tooth.
The best way to determine the cost of your treatment is to schedule an appointment with your dentist. They will be able to assess the damage and recommend the best course of action.
Once you have a plan in place, you can start to look at the costs associated with each treatment option.
Contact a Local Dentist
If you have a broken tooth, contacting a local dentist as soon as possible can ensure you don’t damage your tooth any further. They will be able to assess the situation and determine the best plan for your broken tooth treatment.
With the help of a qualified dentist, you can get your smile back on track in no time. Not sure how to make the right choice? Check out our guide on the Six Factors to Consider Before Choosing a Cosmetic Dentist.