Find out what you should do if this dental issue happens to you.chipped tooth

Oh no! A piece of your tooth just chipped off. As you look at the little piece of enamel in your hand you may be asking yourself, “Now what?” Our Norcross, GA, dentist, Dr. Orson Baek, is here to tell you exactly what you should do if you are faced with a chipped or cracked tooth.

Minimal Damage

No matter how minor the chip may look, it’s still important that you visit your Norcross general dentist. Why? A chip can continue to grow if it isn’t treated. If the chip is small, we may only need to buff out the area to smooth any jagged, sharp edges. In some situations, we may even apply bonding resin over the areas that we had to file down in order to restore the shape of the tooth. In most cases, bonding won’t require us to numb the tooth beforehand, since we only have to apply, shape and harden the resin to your tooth.

Moderate to Severe Damage

If the chip was a bit more extensive than you realized then we will determine whether a dental filling will be able to support the tooth or whether a dental crown will need to be placed over the tooth in order to restore function and strength. A crown may be the best approach if the chip has affected a large portion of the tooth and weakened it. If you do need a crown, it will be custom made to fit over the tooth to protect it from further damage while also restoring its appearance.

How to Treat Your Tooth

While it’s necessary to come in for care, there are certainly things you can do before you come into the office to help ease symptoms including:

  • Eating only soft foods and avoid chewing or using the damaged tooth (try to avoid eating, if possible)
  • Applying sugarless gum to the chip or crack, particularly if the area is sharp and there is a possibility that you may cut your tongue or cheek
  • Take an over-the-counter pain reliever, which can also reduce any swelling. You can also swish saltwater around in your mouth to help provide temporary pain relief

Don’t ignore a cracked or chipped tooth. If you are dealing with this issue, the dental experts at Smart Family Dental Care in Norcross, GA, are ready to help. Call our office today and we’ll make sure to get you in our office as soon as possible for treatment.