A cracked tooth is not just a cosmetic issue. Even if your cracked tooth is not causing you any pain or difficulty chewing now, you should seek treatment anyway. In addition to improving the appearance of your smile, repairing a cracked tooth also protects you from experiencing serious oral health problems in the future. Read on to learn more.
Cracked Teeth Can Become Infected
A dental crack is highly vulnerable to infection-causing bacteria. When bacteria enter a cracked tooth and spread throughout the inside of the tooth and down to the root, an abscess can form. An abscess is a swollen, fluid-filled sac that usually appears either at the root of your tooth or on your gum. Abscesses are painful and need to be treated right away. If the infection is not treated, it can spread beyond your tooth and enter your gums, bones, and bloodstream. A spreading infection is very dangerous and can result in severe complications, including death.
An oral infection caused by a dental crack can also lead to gum disease. When allowed to progress, gum disease eventually causes your gums to pull away from your teeth and weakens the bones surrounding your teeth. When this occurs, your teeth can become loose and fall out. Treating a single cracked tooth now can help prevent tooth loss from gum disease in the future.
Small Cracks Can Grow
Even a small dental crack that is not causing you any discomfort now can present serious issues down the line. Small cracks will continue to spread and grow as they are faced with the pressure of chewing multiple times a day, every day (plus extra pressure if you also grind your teeth). When a crack extends below the gum line, your gum tissue can get damaged and your risk of infection is very high. Plus, these deep fractures require more advanced repair. If you get a cracked tooth repaired when the crack is still small, treatment will most likely involve dental bonding or veneers. More extensive cracks may require a root canal, crown placement, and sometimes even extraction. If you have a cracked tooth and want to discuss your options for repair, call our office today.
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