A dental crown can be a wonderful solution for a number of dental problems, from strengthening a cracked or broken tooth to restoring the health of a severely decayed tooth while avoiding complete extraction. But as effective as they are, dental crowns — just like your natural teeth — can still crack or break under the right conditions. If you have cracked a dental crown, there’s no reason to panic. Below, read more about what to do next and how your dentist can help.
How a Dental Crown Can Crack
There are several events that could lead to a cracked dental crown. Some of the most common include the following:
- Nighttime teeth grinding and jaw clenching (aka bruxism)
- Weakening that occurs due to general wear and tear
- Biting down directly on very hard or chewy foods (like ice, nuts, caramels, etc.)
- Injury due to a blow to the face
- Nail biting
- A fall
- Using the teeth as tools, like to open packages or cut through plastic
How to Handle the Situation
If you have broken a crown, staying calm is the most important thing. First, rinse your mouth out with warm water to remove any small shards that may remain in the mouth. Collect and store any larger pieces that have broken off for possible reattachment. Then, call your emergency dentist right away. They can tell you how soon you need to be seen based on the severity of the situation. Usually, if the crown has cracked or broken in a way that it is rough or jagged, you will want to see the dentist as soon as possible. But if your soft tissues aren’t at risk of injury and/or you can temporarily bond the crown back together, you may be able to wait a day or two for treatment.
Your Dentist Can Help
Depending on how much of the crown was damaged, it may be possible to repair it. Placing composite resin over the area can help to cover up the crack or break as well as strengthen the entire crown. Other times, smoothing the crack or break may be possible. If the crown has been substantially cracked or broken, however, complete replacement may be necessary.
No matter how great the extent of the damage, your dentist can help get your smile back on track when you let them know about it as soon as possible. So don’t delay in the event of a cracked crown — call your emergency dentist right away.
Meet the Practice
Canatella Dental offers a full list of general and cosmetic dentistry services for friends and neighbors in and around New Orleans. If you are dealing with a cracked crown or simply wish to visit an excellent dentist in the area, you are invited to contact this practice by phone at (504) 282-0700 to schedule an appointment.