A chipped tooth usually occurs because of some sort of trauma, such as a fall or a blow to the mouth. It can also occur because of biting down on a substance that is too hard. If your tooth is decayed, a chip is more likely, but it can also happen to perfectly healthy teeth.Unless…
How a Chipped Tooth Can Lead to a Serious Problem
A chipped tooth can ruin the aesthetics of your smile and make you self-conscious about your appearance. It can be the result of biting into something hard or tooth decay destroying the structure of a tooth. Regardless of how severe your chipped tooth is, it needs dental work to prevent it from turning into a bigger issue and to restore your smile.
Dental issues caused by a chipped tooth
A tooth is described as chipped when a small portion of it breaks off. The bigger the portion of tooth enamel that comes off, the more extensive the treatment needed to fix it will be. A chipped tooth leaves a person exposed to a variety of oral issues if the injury is not fixed, including the following.
1. Tooth decay
Tooth decay occurs when the acids created by bacteria in the mouth eat away at teeth structures. The decay leads to the formation of small holes called cavities. When left untreated, these will continue to expand until the tooth is structurally compromised or the pulp chamber is opened up.
Teeth are protected by an outer layer called enamel, which is the strongest material in the body. It is also what mostly comes off when a tooth is chipped. This leaves the inner, less durable layers of the tooth exposed to acids that they would normally be protected from. The result is tooth decay and perhaps, infection.
2. Increased teeth sensitivity
Tooth decay removes some of the protective enamel that protects the inner layers of teeth. As a result, food particles and beverages can get into the dentin, which contains many tiny nerve endings. People with chipped teeth are likely to have increased sensitivity to hot and cold foods/beverages. Fixing the damaged tooth often brings an end to the increased sensitivity.
3. Cuts to soft tissues in the mouth
A piece of a tooth breaking off often leaves the intact portion with sharp, jagged edges that can cut soft tissues in the mouth, like the tongue or inside the cheeks. Injuries to these soft tissues increase the risk of developing a mouth infection.
4. The tooth falling apart
A severe chip can compromise the integrity of a tooth’s structure. For such patients, crowns are used to prevent the tooth from breaking into smaller pieces. Not getting the treatment needed leaves the tooth vulnerable to falling apart, especially if the person continues to eat with that side of their mouth.
Prevent problems by getting appropriate treatments
Dentists have a variety of tools at their disposal when it comes to treating chipped teeth. Treatments like composite bonding can restore your smile during a single visit, while treatments like veneers and crowns can provide a more permanent solution.
The longer you wait before getting your chipped tooth fixed, the more likely you are to run into issues. Call or visit our New Albany clinic to set up an appointment with our dentist.
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