Best Dental Clinics in Bellandur | Nelivigi Dental Clinic
Hairline fractures of the tooth or cracked tooth are one of the main reasons for a person to seek dental treatment.
- Teeth with large fillings
- High pressure from the opposing tooth
- Accidents or blow to the teeth
- Abrupt changes in temperature
- Chewing on hard food like ice, candy, nuts, etc.,
Cracks can appear as:
- Craze lines. These are small cracks that are seen in the enamel (the strong outer covering) of teeth. These kinds of lines make be of esthetic concern but usually do not cause pain and hence do not need to be treated.
- Fractured cusp. Sometimes on the application of heavy occlusal forces for biting something hard the cusp of a tooth may fracture. Large dental fillings make the remaining part of the tooth vulnerable to such fractures. It usually doesn’t affect the pulp of the tooth (the layer of the tooth where nerves, connective tissue, and blood vessels are) and as a result, doesn’t cause much pain.
- Cracks that extend into the gum line. Many times there might be a vertical crack on a tooth that extends through it but hasn’t reached the gum line, such tooth can generally be saved. However, if the crack extends into the gums, that tooth may need to be extracted.
- Split tooth. This is a tooth with a vertical fracture and the crack that travels from its surface to below the gum line. It can actually be separated into two segments. With such an extensive fracture, it’s unlikely the entire tooth can be saved and may need to be extracted.
- Pain on chewing (pain usually begins on biting and is more exaggerated on releasing the bit)
- Pain is not continuous it just comes and goes especially noted on biting
- Sensitivity or pain for hot, cold, sweet and sour
- The gums next to the tooth with a crack line may develop swelling. The pain may only be there on pressing the swelling.
- Your dentist may ask you to bite on a cotton roll and assess the pain on releasing the bite
- An explorer may be used to see if there is a catch
- A dental dye may be used to clearly identify a crack
- X rays are not very useful in detecting a crack it may be required that you get an investigation called CBCT of the tooth.
- Examination of the swelling of the gums may also be helpful
Treatment of a cracked tooth depends on the size, location, and symptoms of the tooth.
- Filling: If the crack is a minor one and not extending on to the gum line a filling with resin cement to fill the gap may do the job.
- Crown: In case the crack is moderately big and a filling will not suffice then the patient may be asked to get a crown or cap done over the tooth. The symptoms get better controlled with a cap fitting all around the tooth and closing the exposure of the crack to the oral fluids.
- Root canal treatment: if the tooth is symptomatic and pain is bothering then an RCT may be required before capping the tooth.
- Your dentist will try his best to save the tooth with one of the above modalities. In case the fracture line extends beyond the gum line, it may not be possible to save the tooth and it may require extraction.
In case you have pain with a tooth that appears on biting or sensitivity to hot n cold food kindly get your tooth examined by a dentist. If the tooth with a fracture line is attended to at an early stage, maybe it can be saved.