Teeth are usually remarkably strong, but there are instances where they can chip, crack or break –– perhaps because you've eaten something hard or if you've fallen and received a facial blow. When a tooth chips or breaks, the area can decay over time. Your best option is to visit your dentist quickly to avoid further tooth damage and tooth-loss-causing infections. This guide offers you information about dental procedures to fix broken teeth so that you're better prepared to take corrective action.
If your teeth have small chips or cracks, then your dentist will likely use a procedure known as dental bonding. Dental bonding is made up of a composite resin in the same colour as your natural teeth. This resin is applied on the chip to fill it up and restore its normal appearance. Bonding is a simple procedure and does not require tooth numbing. Your dentist will begin by roughening your tooth. This allows the bonding material to better adhere to your tooth. An ultraviolet light is used to harden the composite. When the dental bonding resin has dried, it is shaped and polished to match the rest of the tooth. Your chip will no longer be noticeable.
If your tooth is broken or if you have a large chip, then a dental veneer can restore its original appearance once again. A dental veneer is a thin shell made from porcelain or resin to cover the whole tooth when it is damaged. The materials used are similar to the ones used in dental bonding, but veneers are specially created shells to resemble natural teeth. Once inserted, you can chew normally with dental veneers once again.
If your tooth is chipped badly or the tooth has a lot of decay, you may need a dental crown. A crown is a cap that covers and protects the tooth by filling up any gaps to improve its appearance. Your dentist may grind or file away part of the remaining chipped tooth before covering it with a dental crown. Without a crown, the damaged tooth may not be able to withstand the pressure of chewing, eating and even speaking normally.
A root canal is usually undertaken only if other methods prove unviable for your teeth. For instance, if you have breakage or decay in your tooth that is large enough to expose the pulp, then the tooth will need to be treated with a root canal because of the gravity of the problem. Getting a root canal involves cleaning out the dead tooth and removing the nerve. The tooth is then sealed to prevent further infection.
Chipped or broken teeth are inconvenient. If you notice a chip or break in your tooth, visit your dentist immediately to prevent the problem from getting worse and more expensive over time.