When you have a cracked tooth, your mouth isn’t the only thing that’s hurting. You might avoid smiling or presenting yourself to others, which can affect your social life, self-confidence, and job prospects.
Cracked teeth aren’t just an aesthetic problem, either. Without proper attention, you could end up losing the tooth entirely. In fact, cracked teeth are a leading cause of tooth loss, right behind cavities and periodontal disease.
Here at the dental practice of Johnny L. Smith, DMD, in Peoria, Arizona, we see many patients with teeth cracked by trauma to the jaw or from biting down on something hard. We can treat your cracked tooth to repair it or recommend tooth replacement options.
Common mistakes that lead to cracked teeth
Many of us have bad habits when it comes to our teeth, habits that can lead to unintentional damage. We rarely notice our dental health until something goes wrong, such as yellowing, gingivitis, cavities, or the feared cracked tooth.
If you want to avoid cracking your teeth, you have to be mindful of how you treat them. That said, here are some common mistakes that can lead to cracked teeth:
Brushing infrequently and improperly
You should be brushing twice a day, plus rinsing and flossing. Many people forgo rinsing after meals because it feels like a hassle, and a number of Americans don’t floss daily. While they might seem inconsequential, they’re important to maintaining the health of your teeth and gums.
When you do brush your teeth, be sure to do it gently. Use a soft-bristle toothbrush and gently brush in circles. Scrubbing at your teeth too hard can wear away enamel and the soft tissue of your gums.
Not only is nail biting unsanitary, but it’s bad for your teeth. Your fingernails are harder than you think, and biting them puts stress on your jaw and teeth.
Clenching and grinding in your sleep
If you suspect that you might be clenching and grinding your teeth in your sleep, invest in a nightguard. This nightly stress and friction of teeth grinding can cause your teeth to wear down and crack over time, leading to greater dental costs and complications later.
Eating ice and hard candy
Sucking on hard candy slowly coats your mouth in sugar, which encourages tooth decay. Biting down on ice and hard candy puts stress on your teeth and can even chip away the enamel. Try to avoid crunching on these too often.
What to do when you crack a tooth
Swift action is required whenever you chip or crack your tooth, especially if you’re in pain because of it. As soon as you notice a cracked tooth, schedule an appointment with us. We offer emergency dentistry to treat dental issues like a cracked tooth.
If left untreated, the crack in your tooth can deepen, which paves the way for infection, tooth decay, and even eventual tooth loss.
Suffering from a toothache? Worried that one of your teeth has cracked? To get in touch with Dr. Smith and our team, call 623-972-6137 or book an appointment online.