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Cracked Tooth Syndrome in Downey, California
If you’re experiencing sharp pain and discomfort while eating, then one of the causes may be a cracked tooth. Cracked teeth are not always as obvious as one would expect. The cracks are sometimes so tiny that they can’t even be seen on x-rays, or are below the gum line, hidden away from sight. As a result, when you chew food, the increased stress on the tooth produces the pain associated with a condition that is referred to as cracked tooth syndrome.
This syndrome is seen quite often in older patients. Due to the fact that we’re living longer now and retaining our original teeth longer today than ever before, patients have a tendency to crack their teeth more often. Grinding of the teeth as well as advanced tooth decay may also produce cracks. Unfortunately, treatment cannot be delayed for this particular condition, because as the crack widens, bacteria can gain access to the pulp tissue which leads to infection, a broken tooth, and ultimately tooth loss.
Tooth fractures are often difficult to diagnose, as the cracks are invisible to the naked eye. The dentist and staff at John G McAllister DDS Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Downey assess patients for cracked tooth syndrome by first doing a thorough examination. If intermittent pain is caused during the chewing of food on one particular side of the mouth, then the pain source can be used as a guide to finding the crack. The dentist will not only have x-rays performed, but will also analyze the bite of the patient in order to pinpoint the cracked tooth.
Once the location of the crack is determined, treatment options will vary based upon the degree of damage to the tooth. Some cracks only affect the outer portion of the tooth, which is called the enamel. In these particular cases, the affected part of the tooth can be removed and replaced with a crown. For more extensive damage, the treatment options may involve a root canal or extraction. If the cause of the cracked tooth is determined to be grinding or bruxism, then further treatment options will be discussed with the patient.
A cracked tooth is a dental problem that will only worsen over time if left untreated. Fortunately, if discovered early, then treatment options usually allow for the tooth to be saved. If you’re suffering from symptoms of cracked tooth syndrome, which is primarily intermittent pain experienced while eating, then please contact our office today about arranging an appointment.