EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CHIPPED TEETH
Kids often chip their teeth playing in swimming pools and on water slides. Other causes are playing rugby, chewing ice, falls or car accidents, grinding your teeth in your sleep or using your teeth instead of a tool. As most of the causes are the result of an accident, most of the cost is covered by ACC.
It’s not only kids though. A chipped tooth is a fairly common dental injury and can be treated successfully with a variety of dental procedures. But, if the chip is severe, it’s a whole different ball game. Weakened teeth from acidic foods, eating disorders, sugar and cavities chip more easily.
HOW WILL I KNOW IF I HAVE A CHIPPED TOOTH?
If it’s in one of your front teeth, you’ll see it. A bit of your tooth will be missing, leaving behind a rough, jagged edge instead of that lovely, straight edge it used to have. If you can’t see it, then your tooth will have a jagged surface when you run your tongue over your teeth
Your gum around the tooth could become irritated and if the chip is even deeper, then you could experience a pressure pain when chewing. The closer the chip is to the nerve of the tooth, the sharper this pain will be.
IT’S NOT THAT IRRITATING, CAN’T I JUST IGNORE IT?
A chip can weaken your tooth, leaving it vulnerable to future cracks and even fractures. If the chip is really bad, the tooth could suffer nerve damage.
HOW WILL I KNOW IF THE CHIP IS A BAD ONE?
If the chip is starting to affect your tooth’s root, then it’s most likely an infection will set in. And when it does, you may experience bad breath or a sour taste in your mouth, a fever, pain when eating, a sensitivity to hot and cold you never had before and swollen glands in your neck or jaw area. None of which should be ignored. If you do have those symptoms you may need root canal treatment.
I THINK I HAVE A CHIPPED TOOTH, WHAT SHOULD I DO NOW?
Book an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. Obviously, it would be best not to chip your teeth in the first place. That’s not always possible, but if you avoid hard foods and wear a mouth-guard when you play sport that would be a good start.
HOW CAN MY CHIPPED TOOTH BE FIXED?
Depending on the severity of the chip, there are a number of options.
- A dental filling is good for small chips.
- Porcelain veneers would be used to cover purely cosmetic chips.
- Dental crowns can be fitted over the damaged tooth.
- Bonding or on-lays cement a composite resin or porcelain to the tooth and is then shaped.
- Reattachment of the chip can happen if you still have the chip. If you do, keep it alive in a glass of milk.
If you have or think you have a chipped tooth Call Team Dental today and set up an appointment.