Is Chipping Your Tooth a Big Deal?
Chipping a tooth may not seem like a big deal. After all, you did not lose the tooth. However, it is a situation that is more serious than most people realize. Chipped teeth are not uncommon and can happen in sports or even chewing on something hard. Most chips are small and painless, but they should never be ignored. In fact, if you have a chipped tooth, you should schedule an appointment with a dentist right away.
Tooth Chipping is More Serious than You Think!
Chipped teeth will change the way you chew and force other teeth to overcompensate. The deeper the chip in your tooth, the higher is your risk for infection. That is because the broken portion of your chipped tooth could open up to the pulp, i.e. the inner part of your tooth that is filled with nerves and blood vessels. Here, bacteria can enter the tooth’s pulp and access your bloodstream, causing an infection not just in your mouth, but your body as well.
Also, keep in mind that a single chip lays the groundwork for future breaks and chips.
How Can You Repair a Chipped Tooth?
The repair for a chipped tooth will depend on the severity and whether or not pulp is exposed. Some repairs your dentist may suggest include:
• Filling or Bonding the Tooth – If only a small piece has broken off, your dentist may repair it with a filling. If, however, it can be seen when you smile, your dentist will suggest bonding with a tooth-coloured composite. Bonding requires etching the tooth’s surface to make it rough and then applying an adhesion substance followed by a bonding material. The bonding material is then shaped to look like a natural tooth and hardened using UV light.
• Caps and Crowns – When chips are more than just minor ones, a crown or cap may be used to cover the chipped/broken tooth and protect the pulp inside. Porcelain and resin crowns do require more than one visit to your dentist and a filling material may be required first before the crown can be put into place.
• Veneers – Veneers are tooth-coloured thin shells that are placed onto teeth that have chipped or broken surfaces. These too will require more than one visit, but the process is relatively pain-free. The best part is that your tooth will look completely natural once the veneer is in place.
• Root Canal – When the pulp has been exposed, a root canal is typically performed. This will remove any infected and dead pulp, clean the canal and then seal it.
If you have recently chipped a tooth, visit your dentist right away. You can avoid more serious repairs and the risk for infection the faster you have the chip repaired.
Call Dr. Cyrus today at 416-287-2426 to schedule your appointment for bonding, crown or cap.
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