Phone (513) 251-5500
January 15th, 2020

What You Should Do If You Think You Have a Cracked Molar

Category: cincinnati dentist

Ouch! Think you may have a cracked molar?

A crack in your molar can be challenging to detect, which is why you want to set up an appointment with us if you suspect you or a family member has a crack in any of your teeth. Hairline cracks don’t even show up on X-rays because they are so small, so that goes to show just how you can’t always detect the cracks yourself.

Keep reading to learn signs of a cracked molar; potential causes of cracked teeth; and how your dental care team may recommend a treatment depending on the severity of the crack in your tooth.

what to do if you have a cracked tooth

Signs of a Cracked Tooth

A few signs you may have a cracked tooth include:

  • Sensitivity with hot or cold drinks
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold food
  • Sensitivity with extra sweet food or drinks
  • Pain when you chew or bite, often made worse when you “release” your bite
  • Swelling you can see near the tooth

If you have pain that is localized to one area of your mouth that becomes a bit more intense when you eat or chew, that may mean you have a cracked tooth. Another sign? If you have hot or cold drinks and it also hurts in that area, it could be indicative of a cracked tooth or something else that’s changed in your mouth! Take note and don’t ignore these changes in your mouth.

Keep in mind: There may also not be any pain associated with having a crack in your molar. That’s another reason why it’s important to keep up with your regular, professional examination and teeth cleaning so we can examine your teeth for cracks.

Potential Causes of Your Cracked Tooth

You might be curious: what might have caused that cracked molar, or other tooth, for that matter?

Not surprisingly, there are several potential things can cause the teeth to crack, despite how strong they are. In general, here are a few potential reasons you may have a cracked tooth:

  • Teeth grinding, which can happen during the day or at night
  • Chewing extremely hard foods (such as ice)
  • Using your teeth like “scissors” to open and/or break into objects
  • A sport-related injury or impact to the mouth
  • Fillings that have resulted in a weaker tooth over time
  • Teeth that have weakened over time, becoming more vulnerable to cracking as a result
  • …A combination of the things mentioned above!

What to Do If You Believe You Have a Cracked Molar

What should you do if you or anyone in your family has a cracked molar? That’s an important question.

Depending on the size of the crack in your tooth, you may need treatment for the short- and long-term benefit of your health. In some situations, a cracked tooth can lead to infections, which you obviously want to avoid.

Signs of a tooth abscess include a potential fever, unexplained bad breath, issues when chewing, abrupt sensitivity to heat and cold, and even tender-to-the-touch glands in your neck.

The first step to take is to come in and see us, that way we can diagnose and treat you or your loved one based on the issue at hand.

If it is indeed a cracked tooth that needs repair, potential treatments including bonding, crowns, removing the tooth or a root canal. That recommended treatment will be based on the location of the cracked tooth and how big and how deep the fracture is.

hagen dental cincinnati ohio dental practice

Potential Treatments Options When You Have a Cracked Tooth

Let’s take a closer look at some common treatment options for people with a cracked tooth:

Polishing: In some cases, cracks are very small and only have impacted the outer enamel. In those cases, it may only be aesthetics you are looking to improve, so the treatment would be for cosmetic reasons only. These kind of “craze lines” are a form of wear and tear on your teeth. In this case, we can do polishing to potentially improve the appearance.

Bonding: Bonding is when a tooth-colored resin is used to repair a decayed, chipped, fractured, or otherwise problematic tooth. Put simply, it can be used to effectively change the color and appearance of your tooth.

Crowns: In other situations, a crown may be helpful to fit over (or cap) your damaged tooth.

Root canal: When a crack goes so far that it goes into the pulp (the central area of your tooth), a root canal can be used to remove the damaged pulp and to help preserve and strengthen your tooth as much as possible.

Removing the tooth: In some cases, the root has been damaged to the point where your tooth can’t be saved. In that case, you may want to have the molar removed.

Give Hagen Dental Practice a Call Today

We value making sure you feel relaxed and comfortable during your visit just as much as we value your oral health, and we’ll do everything we can to make you and your entire family feel at home. We hope to see you and your family for your next appointment. Give us a call today at (513) 251-5500 or visit our website for convenient online scheduling here.



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