St. Louis County, MO

Broken Tooth Repair in St. Louis County, MO: Restoring Your Smile

Broken tooth repair in St. Louis County, MO. A broken tooth can be a painful and troubling ordeal. Luckily, there are several options available for repairing a broken tooth, depending on the severity of the damage. Plaza Dental Center is committed to helping St. Louis County, MO residents from toddlers to grandparents get the quality dental care they need, with a staff that is always friendly and helpful. If you’re looking for broken tooth repair in St. Louis County, MO, call Plaza at your earliest convenience at 314-361-1818 or contact us through our website.

What to Do After a Broken Tooth?

Having to fix a broken tooth is an emergency dental event, so you should make an appointment with a dentist in St. Louis County, MO as soon as possible. If you have a cracked tooth and the damage is minimal, you may not have any symptoms at first. The enamel that covers our teeth is the strongest tissue in our bodies. Nevertheless, after an injury or due to poor dental habits, it can still be broken. In those instances, the nerves inside of the teeth can be unprotected, leading to pain and, if you don’t see dental care, infection.

There are some things you can do at home to help manage any symptoms and ensure things at the dentist go smoothly:

  • Gather any substantial pieces of the tooth that are no longer attached to your teeth
  • Rinse what’s left of your tooth with warm water
  • Take an over-the-counter pain reliever if you’re in pain (DO NOT TAKE a topical dental pain cream)
  • If the tooth has a sharp edge, you can protect it with some sugarless gum
  • Eat soft foods and don’t use that side of your mouth to chew

If you see any uncovered yellow dentin or red tooth pulp, see your St. Louis County, MO dentist immediately.

5 Types of Broken Tooth

Broken teeth are often described by the seriousness of the fracture and what part of the tooth it’s on. In general, broken teeth are classified into five types:

  1. Craze lines are tiny cracks that are just on the outside of the enamel. They are common, and they can be hard to discover. Generally, the only reasons to get treatment is for appearances.
  2. A fractured cusp occurs when a part of the tooth’s chewing surface detaches. These happen more commonly to teeth with a substantial amount of fillings. These usually don’t affect the nerves inside the tooth and therefore don’t cause much pain, however symptoms may include some sensitivity to temperatures.
  3. A cracked tooth means the fracture descends from the chewing surface of a tooth toward its root. As the crack can spread, saving the tooth requires an early diagnosis. If the crack starts approaching the tooth root the tooth will likely have to be extracted.
  4. A split tooth occurs when the crack in a tooth is allowed to grow. In these cases, the tooth has split into two separate parts all the way down to the root. Most times it won’t be possible to repair your mouth without extracting the tooth.
  5. Vertical root fractures begin at the root of the tooth and spread upwards, the opposite of a cracked tooth. You may not have symptoms at first, and often a vertical root fracture can go undetected if you don’t see a dentist regularly. Problems arise when the crack affects the surrounding gums and bone, however they can also be seen on an x-ray during your regular dental checkup. The tooth may have to be taken out, but often an experienced St. Louis County, MO dentist can restore the tooth with endodontic therapy.

If you think you’re having symptoms of a broken tooth, see a dentist as soon as possible. One of the advantages to having 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 St. Louis County, MO

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

  • 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 such as ice, hard candy, 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 breaking.
  • Poor dental hygiene — Not practicing good oral health can weaken your teeth and gums and make them more susceptible to breaking.
  • Teeth grinding Called bruxism in the dental world, teeth clenching or grinding can lead to a broken tooth.

It’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible for the best restorative results. Not getting treatment can lead to more serious complications, such as infection, periodontal disease, and even tooth loss.

Treatment Options for Broken Teeth in St. Louis County, MO

The treatment for a broken tooth will depend on your unique situation. The goal will be to try to save the tooth, but even if it has to be extracted a skilled dentist will be able to keep your teeth functional and return your full smile through other methods. Below are several options that your St. Louis County, MO dentist may advise:

  • Dental bonding For cracks that are not too serious, dental bonding may be an option. In this treatment, a tooth-colored resin material is applied to the damaged area and then hardened with a special light. Bonding can typically be completed in a single visit and is among the cheaper options for repairing a broken tooth. Bonding is a good option for minor damage to the front teeth, but may not be the best option for more serious damage.
  • Dental veneers — For more extensive fractures, a dental veneer may be a good option. A veneer is a fine shell of porcelain or composite material that is custom-made to fit over the front surface of the tooth. Veneers can improve the appearance of a broken tooth and can last for many years if taken care of properly. The process involves taking a small amount of enamel from the broken tooth, then bonding the veneer to the tooth. Veneers cost more than bonding, but can provide a long-lasting, natural-looking solution for a broken tooth.
  • Dental crowns For a more extensive break, you may require a dental crown. A crown is a cap that is placed over the entire tooth to restore normal appearance and functionality. Crowns are made from various substances, such as porcelain or metal, and can last for many years with proper care. The process involves removing the cracked part of the tooth and capping what’s left with a crown. Crowns are a great choice for significant damage.
  • Root canal If the damage to the tooth has reached the pulp, you may need a root canal. In a root canal, the damaged part of the inner tooth is taken out, and the damaged pulp is removed and the tooth is filled with a special material called gutta-percha. A crown is then placed over the tooth to restore its appearance and functionality. Root canals are often necessary for restoring structure and staving off infection.
  • Dental implants If the broken tooth has to be pulled, dental implants are the modern alternative to permanent tooth replacement. With an implant, a small titanium post will be attached to your jawbone, and a porcelain crown that looks and acts 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 St. Louis County, MO dentist will make 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 your legs, arms, or elsewhere, broken teeth do not completely heal. Getting treatment manages pain, makes it less likely that a crack will spread, ensures the tooth can function normally, and can make you confident with your smile again.

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Preventing Broken Teeth in St. Louis County, MO

While accidents can happen, there are steps you can take to prevent broken teeth:

  • Avoid chewing on hard objects — Hard objects such as ice, hard candy, or popcorn kernels can cause a tooth to crack or break.
  • Wear a mouthguard — If you play sports or are a weekend warrior, wearing a mouthguard can help protect your teeth from trauma and injury.
  • Practice good oral care — 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, seek treatment promptly. Not doing so can make teeth more susceptible to breaking.
  • Consider protective dental treatments — If you have weak or brittle teeth, your dentist may suggest 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 St. Louis County, MO

A broken tooth can affect basic activities and make you less confident in your smile, but there are several options available for repairing the damage. It’s important to get care as soon as possible so the fracture or chip doesn’t lead to other dental problems. At Plaza Dental Center, we take great pride in helping St. Louis County, MO residents restore the function and confidence of their smiles. We’re especially interested in helping people of any age who feel apprehensive in the dentist’s chair get the dental care they need. Call 314-361-1818 or contact us through our website for your broken tooth repair in St. Louis County, MO.