Chipping a tooth can be a scary, anxiety-inducing moment. It can also be painful.
But here’s the good news: if your front tooth broke in half, there are front teeth repair options available.
Most people who chip, break, or crack a tooth are unsure what to do or what the severity of the damage is. They often wonder, “Can a broken front tooth be fixed?”
In this blog, we’ll be chipping in on the discussion about broken front teeth and what you can do to fix them.
Keep reading to learn more about what to do if part of your tooth chips off and get answers to questions like, “how to repair a broken front tooth?”
Half My Tooth Fell Out, What Do I Do?
Severe trauma to the mouth or general wear and tear can lead to chipped or broken teeth, and when it happens you may have many questions going through your head like:
- What do you do when your tooth breaks in half?
- Can you save a tooth that has cracked in half?
- How does a dentist fix a chipped tooth?
It’s not uncommon for teeth to chip, crack, or break. If it happens to you, don’t worry, take a breath, and stay calm.
The most common reasons for chipped teeth are:
- Biting or eating hard things (e.g., ice, hard candy)
- Grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw
- Playing a contact sport
- Falling or being in a car accident
Often, it won’t come as a surprise when you chip or break a tooth, especially if it’s due to more serious trauma. A broken or chipped tooth will feel jagged or may have increased sensitivity.
Regardless of how you chip your tooth, remain calm and call your dentist immediately. Your chipped tooth may not be an “emergency,” but the best course of action is to get a professional to look at it.
If you’re unable to reach your dentist immediately, that’s okay; you can wait a day or two. In this case, protect your chipped permanent front tooth as much as possible. Eating soft foods and brushing more carefully is helpful until you can see your dentist.
Can a Dentist Fix a Broken Tooth?
If you’re wondering, “Can a dentist fix a half-broken tooth?”, yes, a dentist can usually fix a broken or chipped tooth.
However, it’s essential to get to your dentist as soon as possible after realizing your tooth broke in half. Depending on the nature of your break, leaving it untreated could result in further damage and the need for a more serious treatment plan.
But even in a severe case, there are options to fix or replace your front tooth.
How Does a Dentist Fix a Chipped Tooth?
Treatment for a chipped, broken, or cracked front tooth will be case-specific as there are varying degrees of severity. A more minor, less invasive chip may require little to no treatment, while a deeper or more severe crack could result in more advanced care.
To help you better understand your situation and what your dentist may recommend, we’ve listed the most common front teeth repair options.
When only a small amount of enamel chips off, the first technique your dentist may try is called dental bonding.
Dental bonding is a safe, quick, inexpensive way to restore the natural look and feel of your chipped front tooth. It usually takes 30-60 minutes per tooth and is completed at your first visit. Dental bonding is also non-invasive, and anesthesia is not needed.
The dental bonding process goes like this:
- Your dentist chooses a composite tooth-colored resin.
- The dentist prepares the tooth for bonding.
- The resin is applied to your tooth.
- The dentist molds and smooths the resin into the desired shape.
- A special light is used to harden the resin to the tooth.
- The bonded material is trimmed, shaped, and polished.
Once the procedure is complete, you can resume normal functions.
You can expect the bonding material to last anywhere from 3-10 years. If you want bonds to last longer, it’s important to:
- Stay away from hard foods
- Not use your bonded teeth to open things
- Practice good oral hygiene
- See your dentist regularly
If your chip or break is more severe and compromises more of the tooth, your dentist may choose to put a crown on your tooth.
Dental crowns are metal, porcelain, resin, or ceramic tooth-shaped caps that cover a tooth. They strengthen teeth while providing a natural look and feel.
Unlike bonding, placing a crown on a damaged tooth usually requires more than one visit. At the first visit, your dentist will:
- Reshape the chipped tooth.
- Take an impression of the tooth.
- Send the impression to a lab to make the crown.
- Place a temporary crown on your tooth.
At your second visit, the dentist will:
- Remove the temporary crown.
- Check the fit of the permanent crown.
- Cement the crown into place.
After the permanent crown is in place, it can last 5-15+ years. Like bonding, your crown’s lifetime will depend on your lifestyle and oral hygiene.
When a chip or break exposes the pulp (or the inside of the tooth), a more advanced dental procedure may be necessary. Exposed pulp tissue can become infected and die, leading to severe pain and a need for tooth extraction.
A root canal is a procedure that involves removing the dead pulp, cleaning the root canal, and then sealing it. It helps to preserve the tooth and relieve pain.
During a root canal, you’ll be given anesthesia to dull the pain. After the procedure, you may experience some mild discomfort, but that will eventually recede. People often think root canals are extremely painful, but they aren’t any more painful than a routine filling.
It’s common for a dentist to cover a root canal tooth with a crown to strengthen the tooth and keep it from further harm.
Where to Go If Your Tooth Broke in Half
Can a broken front tooth be fixed?
Can a dentist fix a broken tooth?
Yes, and yes!
Chipping, breaking, or cracking a tooth can bring about a quick rush of anxiety and fear. Thankfully, there are many options available to fix chipped teeth.
Depending on the severity of your broken tooth, your dentist may perform one of three options:
- Root canal
If you’ve recently chipped a tooth and are wondering how to replace a broken front tooth, we’ve got you covered.
At Northside Dental Co., our dentist is highly trained and prepared to repair your chipped tooth. We’ll consult with you and provide the best possible treatment plan for you. Whether you have a dental emergency or not, we’re ready to provide you with exceptional dental care.
Book an appointment online and let us help you figure out what to do if part of your tooth chips off.