Maplewood, MO

Broken Tooth Repair in Maplewood, MO: Restoring Your Smile

Broken tooth repair in Maplewood, MO. A broken tooth can be a painful and distressing time. Luckily, there are several options available for repairing a broken tooth, depending on the severity of the damage. Plaza Dental Center is dedicated to helping Maplewood, MO residents of all ages get the quality dental services they need, with a team that is always amiable and professional. If you need broken tooth repair in Maplewood, MO, call Plaza today at 314-361-1818 or contact us online.

What to Do After a Broken Tooth?

Repairing a broken tooth is an emergency dental service, so you should schedule an appointment with a dentist in Maplewood, MO immediately after you discover the tooth is broken. If you have a cracked tooth and the damage is minimal, you may not feel any pain. The enamel that covers our teeth is the most durable material humans have. Nevertheless, through decay or enough force, it’s not unbreakable. When that happens, the inner pulp can be uncovered, leading to pain and, if you don’t see medical care, infection.

There are some self-care steps you can take to help your early symptoms and ensure things at the dentist go smoothly:

  • Collect any large pieces of the tooth that broke off
  • Rinse your mouth out with salt water
  • Take an over-the-counter pain reliever if you’re in pain (DO NOT TAKE a topical oral pain cream)
  • If the tooth has a sharp edge, you can shield it with a piece of sugarless gum
  • Don’t eat hard foods and avoid chewing on that side of your mouth

If you notice any exposed yellow dentin or red tooth pulp, see your Maplewood, MO dentist immediately.

5 Types of Broken Tooth

Broken teeth are often described by the seriousness of the crack and where on the tooth it is. Generally, broken teeth are broken down into five types:

  1. Craze lines are small cracks in the enamel. These are pretty ordinary, and they can be hard to discover. They often don’t require treatment except for if the cracks are on the front teeth.
  2. A fractured cusp happens when a piece of the top surface of the tooth breaks off. These are more common with people with fillings. These usually don’t harm the pulp and therefore don’t result in a whole lot of pain, however symptoms may include some sensitivity to temperatures.
  3. A cracked tooth means the break descends from the top of the tooth down to the gum line. As the crack can spread, saving the tooth requires to get treated early on. If the crack extends below the gum line the tooth will likely have to be extracted.
  4. A split tooth occurs when a cracked tooth goes untreated. When that happens, the tooth has split into two separate parts from the top down to the root. Most times it won’t be possible to repair your mouth without extracting the tooth.
  5. Vertical root fractures start at the root of the tooth and spread upwards, the opposite of a cracked tooth. You may not have many symptoms, and often a vertical root fracture can go unnoticed for a long period. They often go unnoticed until the crack affects the surrounding gums and bone, however they can also be seen on an x-ray during your twice yearly dental checkup. The tooth may have to be extracted, but often a professional Maplewood, MO dentist can repair it with endodontic therapy.

If you think you’re having symptoms of a broken tooth, see a dentist as soon as possible. One of the benefits of going to regular dental examinations is that your dentist will be able to tell if there are any issues you’re not aware of.

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Causes of Broken Teeth in Maplewood, MO

A broken tooth is always unanticipated, but the circumstances surrounding many of them isn’t unique. Some common causes include:

  • An injury to the mouth or face — An injury to the face or mouth, such as during sports or in a motor vehicle accident, can cause a tooth to break.
  • Biting down on hard objects — Biting down on hard objects like ice, nuts, or inedible object can also lead to a broken tooth.
  • Cavities or decay — When a tooth is weakened by decay, it can become more vulnerable to cracking.
  • Poor dental hygiene — Not practicing proper dental health can weaken your enamel and surrounding tissue and make them more susceptible to cracking.
  • Teeth grinding Called bruxism in the medical world, teeth clenching or grinding can lead to a broken tooth.

It’s essential to seek treatment as soon as possible to prevent further damage or infection. Ignoring a broken tooth can cause more serious complications, such as infection, gingivitis, and even tooth loss.

Treatment Options for Broken Teeth in Maplewood, MO

The treatment for a broken tooth will depend on the type of break, where it is on the tooth, and the extent of the damage. The goal will be to try to save the tooth, but even if it has to be extracted an experienced dentist will be able to keep your teeth functional and return your full smile through other methods. Here are several options that your Maplewood, MO dentist may advise:

  • Dental bonding For cracks that are not too serious, dental bonding may be your best bet. In this procedure, a tooth-colored resin material is applied to the damaged area and then attached with a special light. Bonding usually takes place in one visit and is relatively inexpensive. Bonding is a good option for fixing your tooth’s appearance, but may not be the best option for more extensive damage.
  • Dental veneers — For more severe damage, a dental veneer may be recommended. A veneer is a thin coating of porcelain or composite material that is custom-made to fit over the front surface of the tooth. Veneers can make a broken tooth look better and can last for many years with proper care. The process consists of taking a small amount of enamel from the broken tooth, then bonding the veneer to the tooth. Veneers are more expensive than bonding, but can provide a long-lasting broken tooth solution that looks natural in appearance.
  • Dental crowns For severe damage or decay, you may need a dental crown. A crown is a cap that is placed over the entire tooth to restore its shape, size, and strength. Crowns are made from various materials, such as porcelain or metal, and are incredibly durable with proper care. The procedure consists of removing the damaged portion of the tooth and placing a crown over the remaining healthy tooth structure. Crowns are often the best choice for extensive damage.
  • Root canal If the damage to the tooth has reached the inner parts of the tooth, a root canal may be necessary. In this procedure, the damaged part of the inner tooth is removed, and the damaged pulp is removed and the tooth is filled with a special material called gutta-percha. A crown is then placed on top of the tooth to protect it and restore its function. Root canals are often necessary for restoring structure and staving off further damage to the tooth.
  • Dental implants If the broken tooth needs to be pulled, dental implants are the modern alternative to permanent tooth replacement. With an implant, a metal screw will be affixed to the bone in your jaw, and a porcelain crown that looks and performs just like a normal tooth is placed over the screw. The process usually takes place in three appointments:
    1. The screw is attached
    2. After the screw forms a permanent bond with the bone, your Maplewood, MO dentist will prepare impressions for the crown
    3. You receive your brand new tooth

    Before the permanent replacement is ready, you’ll have temporary replacements that also look and act like normal teeth.

Unlike fractures in other parts of the body, broken teeth never completely heal themselves. Getting treatment manages pain, makes it less likely that a crack will get worse, ensures the tooth can function normally, and can make you proud of your smile again.

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Preventing Broken Teeth in Maplewood, MO

While accidents can happen, there are things you can do to prevent broken teeth:

  • Don’t chew on hard objects — Refrain from biting down on hard objects such as ice or inedible objects.
  • Wear a mouthguard — If you play sports or are a weekend warrior, wearing a mouthguard can help protect your teeth from trauma and injury.
  • Follow proper oral health — Brushing and flossing and seeing your dentist consistently for checkups and cleanings and polishings can make your teeth stronger.
  • Address dental problems promptly — If you have decay, gingivitis, or another dental issue, get dental care promptly. Not doing so can make teeth more susceptible to damage.
  • Consider protective dental treatments — If you have weak or brittle teeth, your dentist may advise a protective dental treatment, such as a fluoride treatment or dental sealants, to help protect your teeth.

Call Plaza Dental Center For Your Broken Tooth Repair in Maplewood, MO

A broken tooth can affect basic activities and make you less confident in your smile, but there are ways to make your tooth look and feel like a natural, strong tooth. It’s important to get care promptly so the fracture or chip doesn’t lead to other issues. At Plaza Dental Center, we take great pride in helping Maplewood, MO residents regain the function and confidence of their smiles. We particularly enjoy helping people of any age who feel nervous about going to the dentist. Call 314-361-1818 or contact us online for your broken tooth repair in Maplewood, MO.