Are you feeling sudden pain when you chew or bite down? Or your teeth may feel sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. These are all common symptoms of a cracked tooth, a dental issue that must be addressed immediately. Cracked teeth can cause persistent discomfort and severe damage if not treated properly. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the most common cracked tooth symptoms so you know whether it’s time to visit your dentist for treatment.
Sensitivity to Hot and Cold Temperatures
Sensitivity to colds and foods can be a sign of a cracked tooth. While it’s common for teeth to be sensitive to certain foods and drinks, sensitivity that lasts longer than a few seconds can indicate a larger problem.
In the case of cracked tooth syndrome, the sensitivity is often more intense and lingers long after exposure to hot or cold. It’s important to address this symptom promptly, as a cracked tooth can lead to serious damage, including infection or tooth loss.
If you’re experiencing sensitivity to temperature changes, scheduling a meeting with your dentist for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan is crucial.
Pain When Chewing or Biting Down
A cracked tooth syndrome can be a real pain – quite literally. If you experience discomfort or pain when chewing or biting down, it could be a sign that one of your teeth has cracked or fractured.
This can happen due to various factors, from grinding your teeth to biting down on something hard. Regardless of the cause, a cracked tooth is important to address promptly, both for your comfort and the overall health of your mouth.
If you’re experiencing pain when eating, visit your dental consultant to check it out. They diagnose your problem and develop a treatment plan for your unique needs.
Uneven Bite Patterns
Uneven bite patterns can also be a sign of a cracked tooth. This occurs when the surfaces of the opposing teeth don’t fit together properly, causing a misalignment while you chew. This can lead to discomfort or pain if you are unable to avoid putting pressure on the affected tooth. For some people, it can even damage the opposing teeth if the misalignment is left untreated.
If you notice that your bite patterns have changed suddenly or feel pain when chewing, make an appointment with your dentist. They can diagnose the underlying cause and help you get relief from your cracked tooth syndrome symptoms.
Swelling or Tenderness Around the Affected Area
Swelling or tenderness around the affected area is another common symptom of cracked tooth syndrome. This is because when a tooth becomes fractured, it can create tiny cracks in the enamel that allow bacteria to enter and cause infection.
This can lead to increased inflammation and swelling of the gum line around the affected area, as well as tenderness and pain when brushing or flossing.
It’s important to visit a dental professional immediately if you go through any of these signs discussed above; with timely treatment, you can avoid further damage and relieve your cracked tooth symptoms.
Fractures in the Tooth Surface
Fractures in the tooth surface, or split tooth, can occur when a tooth becomes cracked or fractured. These fractures can come in many shapes and sizes, from small chip-like fractures to more extensive ones like vertical root fractures.
The fracture type depends on the intensity and severity of the impact that caused it and any underlying dental issues that may have contributed to its formation.
If you closely look at your cracked teeth, you can identify fractures on their surface. If so, or if you come across any other symptoms discussed, make an appointment with your dentist immediately.
Chronic Discomfort in the Jaw Joints
Chronic discomfort in the jaw joints can be a symptom of cracked tooth syndrome. This is because when a tooth becomes cracked or fractured, it can cause instability in the jaw joint and discomfort and pain.
The pain may present as a dull ache or pressure that lingers and can worsen when opening and closing the mouth. If the situation worsens, an individual may experience a sensation of clicking or popping in their jaw joint while opening and closing their mouth.
If you’re experiencing persistent discomfort in your jaw joints, visit your dentist to check it out. They can help identify any underlying dental issues that may be causing the pain and recommend treatment options for relief.
Treatment Options for a Cracked Tooth
This section aims to delve into the treatment for a cracked tooth, enabling you to recognise your symptoms and stay well-informed before your dental appointment.
Dental fillings are one of the major treatments for cracked teeth.
When a tooth cracks or fractures, it causes damage to the enamel, exposing the inner layers of the tooth to bacteria and other irritants. This can lead to infection and further decay if left untreated.
Fortunately, dental fillings can be used to restore the tooth fracture and protect it from further damage.
The dentist will clean out the damaged area of the infected tooth, fill it with a special material, and seal it to prevent any additional bacteria or irritants from getting in. This can help reduce discomfort and pain while providing lasting protection for your teeth.
Dental bonding is one of the most efficacious treatments for cracked teeth. This involves applying a natural tooth-coloured resin to the affected tooth that is hardened with a special light. Bonding can help restore the tooth’s function and appearance while protecting it from further damage or decay. This procedure is typically done in one quick clinic visit, and the results can last for several years.
Dental crowns are caps placed over the affected to cracked teeth to provide strength, shape, and support to the damaged area. This treatment option is often used for more significant tooth cracks or damage to multiple teeth, like vertical root fractures. Multiple materials such as ceramic, porcelain, or metal can be used to create crowns, which can endure for 15 years if maintained well.
Root Canal Treatment
If the crack goes deep into the tooth, it may expose its nerves, causing significant discomfort and pain. In this case, root canal treatment may be necessary. This procedure involves removing infected or damaged nerves and placing a crown or other protective measure over the tooth to prevent further damage. While a root canal may seem intimidating, modern dentistry has made significant advancements, making the procedure more comfortable and effective.
Dental Implants or Bridges
If a tooth has been extracted, the dentist may recommend dental implants or bridges to replace the missing tooth. The dental implantation process entails the surgical insertion of a metal post into the jaw bone, which acts as a secure anchor for a dental crown to be affixed onto. Discover more.
Bridges involve attaching a prosthetic tooth to two adjacent teeth using dental crowns. These options can restore the appearance and function of the missing tooth, preventing further dental issues.
Extraction may be the best course of action in extreme cases where the crack has penetrated the tooth’s root, and other treatment options are ineffective. Removing the fractured tooth will prevent further damage and infection, making way for healthier teeth and gums. To ensure optimal oral health, your dentist may suggest exploring alternative options like bridges or dental implants for replacing missing teeth.
Prevention Tips to Avoid Future Damage
In this section, we’ll look at some essential prevention tips that will help you keep your teeth healthy, strong, and whole.
Practise Good Dental Hygiene
The most basic and essential tip is to maintain good oral hygiene. Brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste, floss regularly, and rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash. This helps remove any accumulated debris or bacteria and ensures your teeth stay healthy. Proper oral care is your first defence against dental issues, including chipping or cracking teeth.
Avoid Chewy, Hard Foods
Chewing on hard or sticky food can lead to chips or fractures. Protect your teeth from risks by being mindful of your eating and biting pressure. Crunchy snacks like popcorn and seeds or sticky sweets like caramels and toffees can be especially damaging. Consider replacing them with healthier options like fruits, raw vegetables, and dairy products.
Address Teeth Grinding
If you wake up with a painful jaw or a headache, you may grind your teeth at night. Teeth grinding can wear down the tooth enamel and lead to fractures or tooth cracks over time.
Address this issue by wearing a dental night guard or addressing any underlying sleep or stress issues. Your dental consultant can help you choose the right treatment to prevent further damage.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly
Regular dental check-ups are crucial in maintaining good oral health and catching any issues early on. Your dental consultant will examine your teeth, gums, and mouth, checking for any signs of damage or decay. Regular cleanings and treatments like fluoride application can strengthen your teeth and keep them healthy. Don’t ignore dental pain or sensitivity; get it checked by your dental professional as soon as possible.
Taking care of your teeth is vital, and understanding a cracked tooth’s signs is key to taking action. No single symptom will alone identify a cracked tooth, so it’s important to be aware of how any of those symptoms may surface, either gradually or suddenly. Remember that if you are experiencing pain, discomfort, or sensitivity after eating cold or hot foods, you should contact Total Care Dental Studio immediately. Through accessing your dental history and techniques like X-rays, we can carry out cracked tooth diagnosis quickly. Don’t hesitate if there’s an issue with your teeth – contact us now at (07) 3186 8517 for professional help and advice.
Fractured Tooth (Cracked Tooth): What It Is, Symptoms & Repair
Cracked tooth syndrome – Wikipedia