Biting down on an olive pit or an accidental fall could easily cause a chipped tooth. If your teeth have developed worn enamel, they are more likely to develop chips. Tooth wear, diets heavy in acidic foods and drinks, and poor oral hygiene could also increase your risks for chipped teeth. The good news is that chipped teeth are very treatable. The scope of treatment depends on the severity of damage, however.
Make a Dental Appointment ASAP
If your teeth chip, it is wise to schedule an appointment with our Lafayette dentist as soon as possible. Some instances of chipped teeth may be a cosmetic concern that might only require a simple bonding treatment but in other cases, it could require the need for root canal therapy or a dental crown if the chip is particularly deep.
Folks who have chipped teeth may be asked to improve their oral hygiene routine. Our dentist might also recommend fluoride treatments at our office or the use of fluoridated mouth rinses/toothpastes at home to help strengthen teeth.
Save the Piece(s) of Your Tooth if Possible
When a tooth is chipped, sometimes the chipped portion can be bonded back to the tooth. We recommend saving the chipped portion of your tooth whenever possible. Do not place chipped tooth structure in water as it will kill living tissue. Instead, place the chip in milk or Save-A-Tooth solution, which is available at most large pharmacies and supermarkets. When you arrive for your emergency dental appointment, be sure to bring the piece(s) of your tooth with you.
There are a few approaches a dentist can take to treat a chipped tooth. The type of treatment you receive will depend on your unique circumstances. Larger or deeper chips may require more extensive care than minor chipping.
Small chips can be treated with cosmetic bonding treatments. This type of procedure is a minimally-invasive treatment and is similar to receiving a filling. Bonding involves placing a tooth-colored resin over a chipped area. This resin is very durable and will blend in seamlessly with natural tooth structure.
A dental crown is a restoration that covers tooth surfaces above the gum line. Crowns are tooth-shaped, custom-made restorations that can treat deep cracks, chips, and extensive decay. These restorations can be made from a variety of materials including tooth-colored porcelain. Porcelain crowns look and feel like biological teeth, which is ideal for maintaining an aesthetically-pleasing smile.
Porcelain veneers are micro-thin cosmetic enhancements that can be used to hide dental imperfections. A veneer could conceal tooth stains, worn teeth, cracks, and chips. Veneers are constructed from porcelain so that they appear very natural looking. Sometimes, patients receive a series of veneers throughout their mouth to achieve a smile makeover.
If you have developed a chipped tooth, it is important to see a dentist as soon as possible. We can develop a treatment plan that may include restorative or cosmetic procedures once our team has had a chance to examine your dental injury.
Call our Lafayette dentist office at (337) 234-2186 to schedule an emergency dental appointment.