3 Signs You May Have A Cracked Tooth
You might think it would be obvious if you had a crack in one of your teeth, but it’s actually quite common for small, hairline cracks or fractures in the teeth to go unnoticed for many years. Still, cracked teeth can expose the tooth’s inner pulp, making it more prone to infection and decay, which is why it’s a good idea to be on the lookout for some common symptoms of cracked teeth.
Localized Pain That Comes and Goes
Often times, people with small cracks in their teeth experience localized pain that’s not always noticeable. It comes and goes in waves, and you may go several days or even weeks without experiencing the pain. Because it’s not persistent, many people will ignore it and assume it’s nothing. Usually, the pain can be pinpointed to the exact tooth—though this is not always the case.
Sharp Pain While Biting or Chewing
Another possible sign of a cracked tooth is sharp pain while chewing or biting down, especially on chewy or sticky foods like gum or candy. Hairline cracks and fractures are extremely common along the molar teeth, which are also the teeth you use to chew the most. When you bite down on certain foods, the pressure on the crack can be just right that the crack opens up slightly and causes a sudden, sharp pain.
Sensitivity to Hot or Cold Foods/Beverages
Many people with cracked teeth will also experience increased sensitivity to hot and cold foods or beverages. This is especially common with beverages, as liquids can actually seep into even the smallest of cracks and hit the nerves and pulp of the tooth. Unfortunately, desensitizing toothpastes won’t usually do anything to help in these instances.
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s in your best interest to see your dentist so he or she can take a look at your teeth and have X-rays done to spot any cracks. Treatment options can vary based on the size and severity of the crack. For smaller cracks, dentists may recommend no treatment at all unless you’re experiencing noticeable pain or discomfort. For larger cracks that could lead to decay or other damage, a root canal and sealant may be needed. In the more severe cases, complete extraction of the affected tooth may be recommended, but this is extremely rare. Regardless, the sooner a cracked tooth is treated, the better.
For more information, contact local professionals like Smile Makers Dental.