1 AnswerThere are no alternative treatments for a broken tooth. If you break a tooth, you should see your dentist as soon as possible. Even if your tooth looks fine, or only hurts when you eat or when the temperature changes in your mouth (for example, when you eat or drink something very hot or very cold), or when it is exposed to air, there still could be serious damage to the nerves or blood vessels. If your tooth hurts all the time and the break was caused by a cavity, resulting in damage to the nerve, you may require a root canal.
2 AnswersWhat your tooth looks like after it has been broken depends on how much you injured the tooth. A minor break can look like a little piece or a large chunk has been chipped out of your tooth. A cracked tooth might look like a little line running down your tooth, or it may be too thin to see without an x-ray.
1 AnswerChildren are at a high risk for broken teeth because they're often involved in so many different activities, including sports, which can injure their mouths.
Adults aren't immune to tooth breaks, either, especially if they don't exercise caution when they play sports or ride in a car.
Anyone who likes to eat very hot or cold foods, or hard foods like raw carrots, popcorn kernels or peanut brittle is also at risk for a broken tooth.
2 AnswersAmerican Dental Association answered
If you believe you have a cracked or broken tooth, call your dentist right away. Depending upon the severity of the problem, there are different treatment options. One option may be a crown over the tooth, to strengthen the tooth as well as enhance appearance. If the problem is less severe, it may be possible to reshape the tooth.
1 AnswerWhen you've broken a tooth, even if it's just a small chip, it's a good idea to see your dentist for a proper diagnosis. During your appointment, the dentist will ask you to recount how the tooth was broken, and will ask about any symptoms you're having.
The dentist may press on the tooth or ask you to bite down on a piece of cotton to gauge how much pain you're feeling to assess the extent of the break.
You may have an x-ray if the break is large or may have gone all the way through the tooth.
1 AnswerUsually a broken tooth is caused by some kind of injury to the mouth area. You might have a broken tooth from playing hockey or boxing and getting hit in the face, especially if you aren't wearing a mouth guard at the time. Or, you could chip a tooth during a fistfight.
It's also possible to break a tooth when you bite down on a really hard piece of food, like a hard candy or chicken bone.
1 AnswerSometimes when the tooth is broken, complications may arise. Bacteria can make their way into the break and cause an infection, called an abscess. An abscess is a serious condition that needs to be treated right away.
If a baby tooth is broken, depending on the extent of the break, it could affect the permanent tooth spacing when it comes in.
You're more likely to get a broken tooth if you're taking part in activities that could injure your mouth. Risk factors for breaking a tooth include:
- Getting into fights or boxing
- Playing contact sports, especially if you don't wear a mouth guard
- Driving without wearing your seatbelt
- Eating hard foods, such as hard candy or ice
- Grinding your teeth
- Having a lot of fillings or other restorations that wear down your teeth
- Exposing your teeth to extreme temperatures, for example by chewing on ice and then eating a bowl of soup
1 AnswerThe most obvious symptom of a broken tooth is the missing piece of tooth, which will be more obvious if you've broken one of your front teeth.
Other symptoms can include pain, bleeding and possibly cuts on your lip or tongue if the tooth you've broken is sharp enough to pierce the skin.
2 AnswersTo prevent breaking a tooth, practice caution when playing sports, driving and eating.
When playing sports, especially contact sports, wear a mouth guard to avoid breaking your teeth. Every time you drive or ride in a car, put your children in car seats and wear your seatbelt to protect not only your teeth, but the rest of you, as well.
Even though hard candy might look delicious, be careful not to chew it. Also use caution when eating other hard foods, like raw carrots or candy apples.