If you have a tooth that's been chipped, you know it can lead to a number of different issued that affect your dental health and the overall look of your smile. These problems may be the result of accidents while playing sports, physical altercations, or even biting on something hard while eating.
The team here at our Honolulu restorative dentistry center has helped countless people who've experienced chips and cracks on their teeth. Let's take a moment to consider the treatments available for chipped and cracked teeth.
Problems Caused by Chipped Teeth
First off, let's consider the problems that are caused by chipped teeth.
In terms of dental health, a chipped tooth can be the source of many issues. Tooth sensitivity and pain are not uncommon when a tooth is chipped, especially when the chip is very serious. Biting and chewing can be painful, and having food items that are hot or cold in temperature can lead to serious discomfort. The risk of root canal infection increases as well.
As for the aesthetics of your smile, a chipped tooth can cause you to feel very self-conscious about speaking, laughing, and smiling, even around people you've known for years. If your job involves frequent interactions with the public, this can be extremely troubling.
For minor chips that are cosmetic in nature, dental bonding is a good option. Dental bonding involve the use of tooth-colored resin applied to the teeth. This dental resin is painted onto the teeth themselves, masking imperfections from view and building out the tooth structure in the process.
For more serious cosmetic chips, porcelain veneers tend to be ideal. Porcelain veneers are aesthetic shells that fit over the front portions of the teeth. When in place, a veneer covers an aesthetic imperfection, making the tooth appear pristine and undamaged. Porcelain veneers are so versatile that they can also be used to treat tooth discolorations, spacing issues, and problems with tooth size/shape.
Inlays and Onlays
For serious chips affecting tooth structure, inlays and onlays tend to be more ideal. These dental restorations are like fillings but they are able to rebuild more of a tooth's structure. Inlays and onlays are such that they can replace the entire biting surfaces (cusps) of teeth.
When a tooth is serious chipped, the last resort for treatment is a dental crown. A dental crown is used to cap a tooth that is severely damaged. With a crown in place, the tooth is protected from issues related to temperature and pressure, and patients are able to bite and chew without undue discomfort.
What If a Tooth Cannot Be Repaired?
If a tooth is so severely fractured that it cannot be repaired, a dentist will need to consider tooth extraction. Thankfully there are many options available for treating missing teeth, including dental bridges, dentures, and dental implant. These can all be discussed in more detail during the consultation process.
Learn More About Treating Chipped Teeth
For more information about treating chipped and damaged teeth, be sure to contact our advanced dental care center today. The team at our practice is here to help you smile with renewed confidence.