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Broken and Chipped Teeth

woman smilingYour teeth put up with a lot. They allow you to bite and chew a wide array of foods. They help you to speak effectively. They play an integral role in your smile. They even help to maintain the health of your jawbone. To perform all of these functions, the teeth are incredibly strong. Even still, the stresses that they put up with can be too much, and they can break or chip. If you have suffered a broken or chipped tooth, Weekend Dentistry can help.

What Causes Broken and Chipped Teeth?

There are some different situations that can result in a broken or chipped tooth. Causes of broken or chipped teeth include:
•  A sports injury.
•  A fall.
•  Biting down on a hard piece of food.
•  Bruxism, or grinding and clenching your teeth.

While some fractures and chips are noticeable immediately, there are some situations in which you might not even know that it has happened. The damage may only be noticed during your routine dental exams or with a dental X-ray following a facial injury.

Issues That Broken and Chipped Teeth Can Cause

Broken and chipped teeth need to be addressed right away, even if the damage does not seem that severe at the time of the injury. However, untreated damage, even minor damage, can worsen over time. With more significant damage, the structural integrity of your tooth becomes compromised. The teeth become at risk for further damage, and it may even split or shatter. Your teeth also become at risk for developing a serious, and painful tooth infection. Additionally, damaged teeth can affect the appearance of your smile, as well as your confidence.

Treatments for Broken and Chipped Teeth

The treatment you receive for your broken or chipped tooth depends on the type of damage, and the severity. Some teeth may only require smoothing. Other minor damage may be able to be treated with bonding, a procedure that uses composite resin to restore the shape of the tooth.

If the damage is more significant, you may require a crown. This is a restoration that can help to hold a damaged tooth together, preventing further damage and infection, by encasing its entire visible surface. If the damage is beyond repair, then it may become necessary to extract and then replace the affected tooth.

What Should I Do If Break or Chip a Tooth?

When you break or chip a tooth, it is imperative that you schedule an appointment or come in right away. Until you can get to the office, there are a few things that you can do at home.
•  Rinse your mouth out with warm water.
•  If you are bleeding in any area of your mouth, place a piece of moistened gauze over the wounds and apply gentle pressure.
•  If you are experiencing swelling, you can use an ice pack to help.
•  For pain, you can take an over the counter pain reliever.
•  You can also cover broken teeth with milk or a salt water solution.
•  If you can, find the pieces of your broken tooth. Do not attempt to set them back in place yourself.

If you have suffered a broken or chipped tooth, it is essential to get treatment right away. Call Weekend Dentistry today at (210) 783-0944 to schedule your appointment.

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