If you are wondering what to do with a broken tooth, the best advice we can give you is to see your dentist straight away. Of course, if that isn’t immediately possible you may need some coping strategies to tie you over until you can get an appointment. The approach you use depends on the extent of the break, and how much damage has been done to your tooth. Remember, if you are experiencing an emergency and need emergency dental care you are advised to visit your nearest hospital or clinic for urgent assistance.
What Constitutes A Broken Tooth?
Breaks, cracks and fractures can also present differently, and in different degrees. Sometimes a very small crack or fracture might not be visible to the naked eye, but could still cause discomfort and pain, especially when biting down. If no obvious trauma has occurred to your teeth but you do feel pain, pressure or sensitivity when biting or chewing food it is possible that you may have a broken tooth.
What Causes A Broken Tooth?
There are a number of different causes behind a broken, cracked or fractured tooth which include
- Biting down on something hard like ice or trying to open a bottle with your teeth. Sometimes even biting down on hard candy can crack or fracture a tooth
- A trauma, accident or fall
- A weakened or damaged tooth surface, such as teeth that are weakened by fillings or restorations
- Teeth that have undergone root canal treatment
- Teeth that have been subjected to major temperature extremes may also be weakened as a result
Sometimes it isn’t possible to self-diagnose a problem. Any pain or sensitivity should be reported to your dentist to evaluate.
What To Do When You Can’t Get Emergency Dental Care?
Sometimes it isn’t possible to get emergency dental care immediately, and you have to wait for an appointment or for your dentist to open. Here are some tips to show you what to do with a broken tooth
- Avoid eating and chewing on that side of your mouth
- Avoid very hot and cold foods and beverages as they may cause tooth sensitivity
In the event that you do experience pain and sensitivity to the area take over-the-counter medication to provide you with relief
Rinse your mouth gently with a warm salt water rinse to keep it clear of bacteria and debris.
The Importance Of Having A Broken Tooth Treated
As mentioned above any discomfort or pain in your teeth should be inspected by your dentist. Even a tiny hairline fracture or break in the surface can expose your dentin to bacterial infection. If the pulp of your tooth becomes diseased you may need a root canal treatment, which is a much more involved and expensive procedure than a restoration. Remember that early intervention and prevention is better than cure.
If you need emergency dental care, do not delay, please visit your nearest hospital or clinic for help. Contact us for help with a broken, chipped or fractured tooth now: (07) 3185 2387.