The teeth are extremely durable, but they often experience natural wear and tear. The teeth can crack from things as simple as aging, or from things that a person may not even notice is harmful. Continuous grinding of the teeth may cause them to eventually crack while chewing on foods that may be chewy or too hard can also lead to cracking.
Because different types of cracks can occur, knowing what kinds there are can be beneficial to a person who may be experiencing a cracked tooth. A cracked tooth can be examined by the person who can further determine what type of crack it is, and then they can schedule an appointment with a dentist so that the crack can be treated.
Today, we will go over the different types of cracks that the teeth can incur. Knowing the different types will help in the prevention of future cracks from forming.
Types of cracks in the teeth
These minuscule cracks only appear on the surface of the tooth, otherwise known as the enamel. Dentists refer to these as enamel infractions or micro-fractures of the tooth’s surface. Craze lines typically do not require treatment because they don’t create any discomfort and they don’t reach the dentin layer. However, some people may opt to have these treated for aesthetic reasons only.
A fractured cusp crack can be a complete or incomplete fracture along the tooth’s surface. This type of crack usually affects a tooth that has a dental filling or the teeth surrounding it, they tend to mainly be molars. Fractured cusps can vary, but generally, they don’t have an effect on the pulp of the tooth, which is the interior and the most sensitive part. However, if the crack is big enough, the pulp may be exposed, causing discomfort and sensitivity to extreme temperatures.
Fractured cusps should be examined by a dentist to determine whether or not treatment is necessary. If the crack is deep enough, it may be best to have a crown put over it in order to protect the original tooth. However, if the crack is minor, a dentist may not advise a treatment plan.
A split tooth crack is a complete crack starting from the surface of the tooth, going all of the way to the gum line. These types of cracks tend to be a lot more severe and do need the immediate attention of a dentist. The tooth may be able to be split directly into two parts, meaning that saving the tooth as a whole is quite unlikely.
Split tooth cracks typically occur from the long-term build-up of a smaller crack. Over time, the small crack enlarges from bad habits such as ice chewing or grinding of the teeth.
The teeth can crack for a number of reasons, but they tend to occur when bad habits are repeated for long periods of time. A lot of cracks in the teeth may not even be noticeable to the human eye. It’s important that individuals regularly visit the dentist so that cracks can be caught early on.
If you still have questions regarding the different types of cracks that teeth can incur, then give us a call today. We’re happy to assist in any way that we can!
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