Modern treatment options for a broken or chipped tooth
Even though your teeth are extremely strong, and made of the hardest tissue in your body, they can still be damaged. Biting on hard foods, sports injuries, or accidents can all cause your tooth to fracture or chip – especially if your tooth already has decay or a major filling.
But if you’ve ever experienced that sinking feeling as you hear the ‘crack’ of your tooth breaking – don’t despair! Wickham Terrace Dental have the know-how and the modern dental treatments to help repair and restore your chipped or broken tooth.
What to do about a broken or chipped tooth
It’s very important that you visit Wickham Terrace Dental as soon as possible after noticing your tooth is broken, chipped, or fractured. Early attention will help us avoid further damage or infection to your tooth, which in extreme cases can mean your damaged tooth will need to be extracted.
Before you see our dentists, there are a few things you can do to alleviate the pain of a chipped or broken tooth. You can take an over-the-counter pain reliever such as Nurofen, and gently rinse your mouth with salt water to cleanse the area.
If your broken tooth has a jagged or sharp edge, cover it with sugarless chewing gum to guard against damage to your cheeks or tongue. Try to avoid eating; but if you really must eat, stick to soft foods and avoid chewing around the broken tooth.
Fixing a broken or chipped tooth
The Wickham Terrace Dental team may recommend different treatments for your broken tooth, depending on how severe the damage is.
If just a small piece of enamel has chipped away, we may simply repair it with a filling. If your front tooth has been damaged, we may recommend dental bonding using tooth-coloured resin. This simple procedure involves sculpting an adhesive material onto your tooth, then shaping and hardening it, to restore your tooth back to its former appearance.
If you have a very badly damaged or broken tooth, we may instead restore it using a dental crown. The damaged portion of your tooth is removed, and a tooth-shaped cap called a crown is installed to protect your tooth and restore its natural appearance. Your dental crown can be made from metal, ceramic, or a combination of both.
If you do ever notice a chipped or broken tooth, remember that you cannot treat the problem at home. Contact Wickham Terrace Dental as soon as possible to arrange a consultation, so we can recommend the best treatment for your needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does a broken tooth always cause pain?
Not always. Minor tooth fractures usually don’t cause pain, so the only warning you may get is if you notice a sharp area on your tooth with your tongue. The discomfort and pain of a broken tooth can be either constant or inconsistent, and you may only feel pain when chewing.
That’s why you should always contact Wickham Terrace Dental for an examination if you notice your teeth are uncomfortable when you eat, or sensitive to hot or cold. And of course, constant pain could be a sign that your tooth’s nerve is damaged, which may mean more extensive treatment such as root canal therapy is needed.
How can I prevent a chipped tooth?
Even though your teeth are made from the hardest material in your body, they aren’t completely invulnerable to damage. To avoid the need for treatment for a chipped tooth, make sure you:
- Avoid biting or chewing on hard objects like popcorn kernels, ice, or pencils
- Try not to grind or clench your teeth, which can damage the biting surfaces
- Wear a custom-made mouthguard whenever you play contact sport
What’s the best way of fixing a chipped tooth?
The treatment for your chipped tooth will depend on how badly it is damaged, and where the tooth is in your mouth. The Wickham Terrace Dental team have the experience and resources to diagnose your problem, and carry out the best treatment for your needs.
How much does fixing a chipped or broken tooth cost?
The cost of fixing a broken or chipped tooth will depend almost entirely on the amount of tooth structure you have lost. For a minor chip, we can sometimes simply polish the rough surface to make it smooth and cleanable at a cost of just a few tens of dollars. Fillings start at under $200, and for severely damaged teeth, crowns start at $975.