A Broken Tooth
A broken tooth can be a very painful and unaesthetic experience. When examining a broken tooth the treatment varies depending on the site of the break and how deep it is.
How do you know if you have a broken tooth or fracture?
- There is a sharp or rough edge to the tooth that bothers your tongue
- The tooth may change color
- The tooth becomes partially mobile or sticks out compared to the other teeth in the area
- Bleeding from the surrounding gums
- Pain when chewing or releasing your bite
- Pain when the tooth is exposed to hot or cold beverages
What to do immediately following a tooth break:
- Wash the area with warm water and stop the bleeding
- Apply hydrogen peroxide to the area of the broken tooth with a clean gauze. This is in order to prevent the area from getting infected.
- Take a pain-killer
- If the tooth is loose and in a child’s mouth, make sure he does not swallow it
Even if you do not see the fracture but the tooth is either loose, painful or has changed color see your dentist immediately because the break may be deeper in and an x-ray is necessary.
Types of breaks and their treatment:
A broken tooth may involve only the crown, or can include the crown and root of the tooth. Your dentist will deal differently with each depending on the seriousness of the break. When the crown is only chipped the treatment will usually be smoothing and polishing the area so it is not sharp. If the crown is broken your dentist may repair the missing area with filling material. If the break is more serious and involves the nerve of the tooth a root canal and crown may be necessary. Sometimes in the most complicated cases the tooth may need to be removed.
In any case of a broken tooth or even a suspicion that your tooth may be broken, the best thing to do is arrive at the dentist as soon as possible.