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5 Signs You Cracked a Tooth

December 15, 2023
5 Signs You Cracked a Tooth

A cracked tooth is a relatively common occurrence. It can happen for a variety of reasons, but when it does it needs to be treated right away to save the tooth. Sometimes you can see the crack or a piece of the tooth breaks off. Other times you can’t see it at all. 

How do you know you have a cracked tooth if you can’t see it? There are some telltale signs and symptoms that can give you a pretty good indication. If you have any of the following 5 signs, contact Advanced Endodontics as soon as possible. 

1. Toothache that Comes and Goes. 

When a tooth is cracked it can cause pain, but it isn’t always constant. You may feel a toothache for a few seconds or minutes, and then it goes away, making you wonder if there is a problem or not. If the toothache keeps coming back over and over, don’t ignore it. Contact us for treatment while the tooth is still able to be saved. 

2. Pain When Chewing.

A cracked tooth may only hurt when you bite down or chew something on that tooth. The pressure of chewing can send pain signals to the nerve that indicate a crack. If you continue to chew on that tooth, the crack may worsen and spread until the tooth can’t be saved. Contact us if you have pain when chewing. 

3. Sensitivity in One Tooth.

A crack in a tooth can cause the tooth to be particularly sensitive. The crack exposes the nerves inside the tooth to cold, heat, and sugar, things that exacerbate sensitivity. If one tooth is more sensitive than your other teeth, it may indicate a crack in the enamel. Another sign is if the sensitivity lingers after the source is removed. 

4. Swelling of the Gums. 

A cracked tooth is at an increased risk of infection. Bacteria can enter the tooth through the crack and infect the dental pulp, the soft tissue at the center of each tooth. A tooth infection will cause the gum tissue around it to swell up due to inflammation. Signs of an infected tooth are potential signs of a cracked tooth. 

5. Discoloration of the Tooth. 

Another sign of an infected tooth, or potentially a cracked tooth, is discoloration. The tooth may turn gray or brown after trauma due to internal bleeding within the tooth where the blood vessels are located. A gray or brown line in your tooth enamel is most likely a crack caused by trauma. 

Treatment for a Cracked Tooth 

A cracked tooth is most commonly treated with a root canal and a crown. The root canal procedure removes the dental pulp from the inside of the tooth to eliminate and prevent infection. Then the tooth enamel is reduced and a crown is placed over the remaining tooth material, allowing the natural root to remain in place for support. 

Who Treats Cracked Teeth? 

Cracked teeth can be treated by a dentist or an endodontist. However, an endodontist specializes in saving teeth by treating the dental pulp inside them. An endodontist commonly treats cracked teeth and other problems that threaten the health of the pulp. Going to an endodontist means you’re choosing an expert who will have the greatest chance of saving your cracked tooth. 

Why Choose Advanced Endodontics? 

Advanced Endodontics specializes in saving cracked teeth, even those that others would deem beyond saving. If it is possible, and in your best interest, we will do everything we can to save your natural tooth. 

Contact us right away if you think you may have a cracked tooth. The sooner we can treat it, the better the chances that we can save it.  

Frequently Asked Questions About Cracked Teeth 

Can a cracked tooth always be saved? 

In many cases a cracked tooth can be saved. However, some cracks are too severe for it to be worth attempting to save the tooth. If the tooth is split apart or if the crack begins or extends under the gumline, it may be too late. 

Is a cracked tooth an emergency? 

A cracked tooth is an urgent situation, but it may be able to wait until the next day if it occurs after hours. During regular office hours, contact us right away. After hours, call and leave a voicemail message and someone will contact you to determine whether or not your tooth needs immediate treatment. 

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