Chipping a tooth can happen to anyone as a result of an accident, these kinds of injuries can happen when chewing hard food, or from natural wear and tear. Left untreated, the chip might crack to let in bacteria that will cause decay and possibly lead to a cavity.
The damaged tooth may even affect nearby teeth in your mouth. Below are a few things you can do to treat a chipped tooth before it becomes problematic.
Restore the Tooth
You may be tempted to overlook a small chip in one of your teeth. But if the chip can be seen by others, is cracked, or is significant enough to damage the tooth and possibly cause a bigger chip over time, have your dentist evaluate it. A filling might be able to fix the chip and make it invisible to casual observers.
Getting it filled will also prevent it from widening or deepening from ongoing use over time. Sometimes identifying a chip in your teeth can be difficult to do on your own depending on where it is located. Remember to visit your dentist for regular checkups so that damaged teeth can be quickly identified and treated.
Replace the Damaged Part of the Tooth
For a larger chip, the dentist may recommend getting a crown procedure to replace the damaged part of the tooth. The crowned tooth might be supported by the teeth on either side of it. Having a damaged tooth crowned will protect the rest of the tooth to keep it usable and attractive indefinitely.
Dental crowns are typically made from materials like porcelain and are designed to match the color of the rest of your teeth. This is a more involved procedure, so ask your dentist for details to see if the chipped tooth can be preserved.
Extract the Tooth
In more serious cases where the tooth is heavily chipped or is experiencing other issues as well, such as extensive fillings or gum decay, the dentist may recommend a tooth extraction. Having a decayed tooth extracted can help prevent the decay from spreading to other parts of your mouth.
If it’s a wisdom tooth, the gap left by extraction will probably not be noticeable and not need to be filled by a replacement tooth. The gums will heal in a short time, and the rest of your teeth should not be impacted.
Replace the Entire Tooth
When other than a wisdom tooth is chipped and extracted, the dentist may recommend having an implant or denture procedure to fill the gap left by the missing tooth. This helps to keep your teeth in alignment and your jaw in good working order. While these procedures require several steps, they are regularly performed safely and successfully.
Research Implant Procedures
Dental implants remain by far one of the most sought-after tooth-loss therapies since the replacement tooth looks exactly like your natural teeth. Moreover, dental implants are beneficial to your dental health since they stimulate the growth of your jawbone so you are not at risk of bone loss or facial deformities in the event that you lose multiple teeth at a time.
The surgical procedure for the implantation of the implant is carried out in two main phases. The first phase is the actual surgical procedure. Either your dental surgeon will employ a localized anesthetic or they will sedate you intravenously before the surgery can be performed.
Once your pain receptors are numbed, the dental surgeon will incise your implant site (the location of the lost tooth) to expose your jawbone. Once the jawbone is visible, a drill is employed to create a suitable hole in which a titanium root is screwed into it.
Once the base of the dental implant is in place, the site is sutured and the surgery is completed. The implant will then be given several months to fuse into the jawbone.
Consult your dentist about the best way to address your chipped tooth. Taking care of it now helps to reduce the risk of continued damage and protect the rest of your teeth. The dentist will evaluate your problem tooth and explain each of the procedures to help you make an informed decision for treatment.