Most people put well-meaning effort into keeping their teeth and gums healthy. If you have a healthy habit of brushing and flossing your teeth every day, your heart may drop a bit if your dentist tells you a tooth has been fractured. A fracture can occur without warning and may not even be felt at the time it happens. This is because a fracture is a small crack in the tooth; such a small crack that it may not be visible to the naked eye. Often, this dental injury results from biting or chewing on something hard.
A fracture may be tiny, but that does not mean it can’t have a significant impact on the way your tooth feels and performs. If a fracture is discovered on x-ray during a routine exam, or if you are experiencing unexplained tooth pain or sensitivity, there is a need for restorative dental care. At Peters Dental Associates in Houston, we provide a range of treatments that can restore strength to a fractured tooth. Which treatment is right for you depends on the extent of the injury.
Dental bonding is the technique that applies durable composite resin to a superficial layer of tooth structure. Fractures that have not surpassed the middle layer of a tooth (dentin) may be able to be repaired with this treatment method. Often, dental bonding is a term applied to cosmetic dentistry. In this instance, we could refer to the bonding technique as a tooth-colored filling. To repair the tooth, the damaged structure is conservatively removed. Composite is applied directly over the fracture, where it can fill in the crack and supply a layer of strength over it. After hardening the resin with light, we can polish the tooth, and you’ll never see evidence of your initial injury.
More substantial fractures that have broken through the surface enamel and the middle layer of dentin may need a higher level of care. This is because the nerves and blood vessels in the tooth lie just beneath that middle layer and may be more sensitive due to the injury. A dental crown encases the tooth from tip to gum line, providing robust shelter that lasts for several years. Dental crown treatment in our office can be completed in just one day when the CEREC process is selected. Lab-made dental crowns are also a reliable option for preventing further damage after a fracture.
There’s no way around it; a dental fracture compromises your tooth. For prompt and friendly dental care, call (281) 486-8061.