Chicago's Family Dentist

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CRACKED TOOTH

How do you strain a tooth enough to crack it?

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    experience a trauma
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    biting on hard objects
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    clenching by day
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    grinding by night

How can I tell I may have a cracked tooth?

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    Oral pain without obvious cause
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    If you have difficulty pinpointing the location of your pain
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    If you feel oral sensitivity to warm and cold foods
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    If you feel unexplained pain when you eat

When your tooth enamel cracks you may feel a debilitating pain for a moment. Sometimes if you’re not applying pressure on the crack you won’t feel pain. As the cracked tooth does its job the crack will widen, the pulp and inner material of the tooth gest exposed and the discomfort will begin. When you release the pressure again the two sides of the crack fuse together again, relieving the pain temporarily. But if you don’t treat the crack your pulp will suffer irreversible damage and your pain will escalate. Sooner or later you’ll end up with a pulp infection that can spread to the surrounding soft tissue and the bone!

Your treatment will be determined by the type of crack. If it’s relatively shallow you may just require a root canal and keep your original tooth. If your tooth is beyond repair it will need to be extracted.

What types of tooth cracks are there?

Crazes

These vertical cracks are but tiny scratches on the surface, which most dentists consider a normal tooth anatomy phenomenon. They don’t require treatment for health purposes, but are often treated for aesthetic reasons

Oblique supragingival cracks:

These do not extend below the gum line, but only affect your tooth's crown. This type of crack does not result in much pain, as the tooth pult where all the nerves and vessels are housed will not be affected. The part of the tooth that is affected will fall off.

Oblique subgingival cracks:

These cracks could extend beyond the jawbone and beyond the gum line. They are very painful, and if a piece breaks off it will usually dangle in the mouth until a dentist removes it. An oblique subgingival crack requires periodontal surgery to expose the crown and endodontic treatment to apply a restorative device like a crown.

Vertical furcation cracks:

When the roots of your tooth dissect a vertical furcation occurs, deeply damaging your nerve. As the tooth will usually not split completely, a crown or a root canal will usually do the trick

Oblique root cracks:

This crack does damage only below the gum line and below the jawbone –- the surface of the tooth is not affected. Oblique root cracks nearly always require extraction, unless the fracture is not at all close to the surface.

Vertical apical root cracks:

This crack breaks the apex or tip of the tooth root. Because it’s highly painful most patients request extraction sooner or later (sometimes trying a root canal first to alleviate pain temporarily.)

Are there other treatments for cracks?

There are many potential treatments to consider after your dentists identifies a crack through an exam or an X-ray.

If the root is damaged root canal therapy is usually recommended. Your dentist will scoop out the pulp, nerves and vessels then fill the open space with gutta-percha. Finally he or she will install a crown of filling to stabilize your tooth so it can function good as new!

If the crack is so severe that your dentist must extract your tooth other restorative methods will be considered: a bridges, dental implants or partial dentures. All of these options will get you biting, chewing and talking just as you did before the damage!

If you suspect or know that you’ve cracked a tooth, call our office immediately at 773-831-0002. You want to take care of the crack immediately so as to preserve your tooth and avoid extraction if possible.

Where are we Located


ABC Dental has extended office hours 6 Days a week and plenty of free parking.

4608 W Diversey
(In Hall Plaza ​with the Walmart)
Chicago, IL 60639
 (773) ​481-2200

Da​y

Time

Monday

10AM–7PM

Tuesday

11AM–7PM

Wednesday

11AM-7PM

Thursday

10AM–5PM

Friday

11AM–7PM

Saturday

9AM–4PM

Sunday

Closed

We are the most chosen dentist in the 60639, 60647, 60618, and 60657 zip codes. Patients choose us for our welcoming staff, our family practice, extended hours, reasonable prices, AND free parking.

What ​Our Patients Say


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​Wonderful team, and very professional dentist. Dr. Nada always the best.


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​If I get there 15 minutes early they're ready for me! They offer reminders, smiles, and great customer service!


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​AMAZING PEOPLE THERE THE DOCTOR WAS VERY NICE TOO. HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT