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What does a cracked tooth look like?

It can be hard for a dentist to tell if you have a cracked tooth as they aren't always accompanied by pain and many cracks can be invisible to the naked eye and won't always show up on x-rays. If you do notice a crack, it may be exacerbated when you bite down.

You can help your dentist find the problem tooth by sharing the following:
  • What things cause you pain -- such as heat or cold; foods that are sour or sticky;
  • Showing your dentist the area of the pain.
You may not be able to see a cracked tooth if the crack is very small, such as a hairline fracture. Sometimes you can feel a cracked tooth better than you can see it. You may feel a rough spot on your tooth or feel discomfort when you chew. Other times a cracked tooth is more noticeable. If you have a severely cracked tooth that you can actually see, it is a more serious issue and you need to visit your dentist as soon as possible. A large crack can expose the inside of your tooth to damage and disease, and it needs to be fixed as soon as possible.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.