Find yourself wondering why did my tooth chip? For some, having a chipped tooth can be scary. For others, it may be just a minor cosmetic concern. But anytime you chip a tooth, it needs to be addressed by your dentist.
A chipped tooth can irritate the mouth, such as by cutting or scraping your tongue and cheek. It can also give bacteria easy entry to the inside of the tooth - leading to decay and potentially even tooth loss. All of these issues can be avoided - and your tooth can be restored - thanks to advanced restoration dental procedures.
Common Reasons for a Chipped Tooth
Trauma and accidents can, of course, cause a tooth to chip. For instance, getting hit in the face with a baseball, getting in a car accident, falling, banging your tooth on something hard, and so on. This can happen at any age - and it does, but is very common among younger patients.
There are many other reasons for a chipped tooth. Let’s take a look at a few of the most common.
Eating hard foods. Enamel, your tooth’s outer layer, is not designed to handle hard foods. This is why dental professionals often warn about eating things like ice, hard candies, and other hard foods as it can easily cause you to chip a tooth. The more you indulge in these things, the weaker the teeth become until they finally chip or crack.
Bruxism. Grinding and clenching the teeth is another reason your tooth may chip. Over time - and depending on the severity - bruxism can lead to many ailments, such as headaches, toothaches, jaw pain, etc. It can also cause the enamel to wear down and leave teeth vulnerable to breaks, cracks, chips, and fractures.
Tooth decay. As decay begins to eat away at your enamel and into the inner areas, the tooth becomes weaker and weaker - and becomes more susceptible to chipping. It is important to note that unaddressed tooth decay can wreak havoc on your oral health and should be treated as soon as possible.
Wear and tear with age. Getting older means that we have put our teeth through a lot over the years. And, like anything, they have to deal with wear and tear. They aren’t as strong as they once were and are more likely to chip.
What to Do When You Chip Your Tooth
Ready for some good news? When you chip a tooth, there are treatments available to restore the tooth to its beautiful appearance and its full functionality. It is important that you contact your dental office right away to schedule an appointment. An assessment will be done over the phone to determine whether you can wait for the next available appointment - or if you should be seen as an emergency.
In the meantime, here are a few things you can do:
- Eat only soft foods, chewing on the opposite side of your mouth.
- Do a saltwater rinse if pain or swelling is an issue.
- Place a piece of orthodontic wax over any sharp edges to protect other areas of your mouth.
- If you are in pain, you can find relief with over-the-counter pain medication, taken as directed.
Restore Your Smile at Jones Family Dental
We have the advanced tools and skills necessary to restore smiles, whether part of a treatment plan or as emergency dental care. It is our priority of our team at Kevin G. Jones, DDS, to save natural teeth whenever possible - and give our patients a healthy, happy smile they feel confident with.