Chipped tooth, here’s what to do!

“I chipped my tooth. What do I do?”

If this has happened to you, you’re not alone. Accidents happen. Maybe it was a bad fall. Perhaps sports got a little too competitive. Or maybe you bit down hard candy or other food, and now you’re regretting it.

Chipping a tooth can be stressful, especially before your wedding, graduation, interview, or big audition. If you don’t know what to do after chipped tooth, your initial reaction may be to panic, but rest assured that your smile and confidence can be restored.

Dr. Alexie Aguil at Exquisite Dentistry is West Hollywood’s leader in restorative and cosmetic dental services. He knows what to do to fix your chipped tooth. His precision and skill will give you the best possible outcome for the situation.

Dr. Aguil answers questions about chipped teeth on a regular basis. He’s listed some of the most common questions he hears at his Los Angeles office and his answers to these important queries.

“I Chipped My Tooth. How Bad Is It?”

The first question Dr. Aguil usually fields from concerned patients is about the extent of the damage to the tooth. Because tooth damage occurs for a variety of reasons, there are several types of injuries to look out for.

  • Craze lines are minor surface cracks that develop on the enamel of your tooth, which may not require treatment. This is the best-case scenario in dealing with a cracked or chipped tooth.
  • Broken cusps involve damage to the chewing surface of your teeth. Though not painful, these injuries may require reshaping and crowns.
  • Minor chips are usually not too painful but may need to be repaired with polishing and/or filling.
  • A cracked tooth consists of damage to your whole tooth—from the enamel to the root. If left untreated, the crack can worsen over time and become a split tooth. The crack may also be harboring bacteria that can lead to cavities—potentially infecting the root and leading to more extensive treatments, such as root canal therapy and a dental crown.
  • Cavities can weaken your teeth, resulting in decay-induced breaks. Following the recommendation of your dentist and hygienist, we can detect cavities before extensive treatments are needed. This is the best way to avoid cavities is to ensure you are keeping your semi-annual dental cleaning appointments.

“I Chipped My Tooth. How Do I Care For It?”

Apply gauze to chipped tooth

If you’ve damaged one or more of your teeth, schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as you can. If it’s a dental emergency, they may be able to fit you in sooner. In the meantime, follow these simple instructions if you’re still not sure what to do with your chipped tooth:

  1. Clean out your mouth with lukewarm water. Water that is too hot or too cold could cause significant pain to any exposed nerves in the pulp of the cracked tooth.
  2. If you notice bleeding as a result of a damaged tooth, apply pressure to the injured area using clean gauze. Maintain gentle pressure until the bleeding has subsided.
  3. Protect the affected tooth until your upcoming dentist appointment. Dental cement is an effective temporary solution and can be found at most drugstores or big-box retailers like Target or Walmart. Orajel can topically dull the pain of a chipped or cracked tooth, but you should use any type of medication with caution. Check with your dentist before using any over-the-counter dental products.
  4. If the damage causes pain that a topical medication cannot alleviate, take an over-the-counter pain reliever like Tylenol or Advil. Be sure to follow instructions carefully to take the proper dosage.
  5. Eat only soft foods and avoid using the chipped tooth to chew.

“I Chipped My Tooth. What Will the Dentist Do?”

Your treatment will depend on the severity of your injury. For a minor chip, the dentist may polish the affected tooth to make its surface smoother and less likely to cut the inside of your mouth. For extensive damage—when your tooth’s nerve is exposed, for example—the dentist may recommend a root canal and a crown to replace the broken tooth. The only way a dentist will know what to do with a chipped tooth is by viewing the tooth and possibly taking X-rays of the affected area.

For many chipped teeth, your dentist will use a veneer or crown to restore your smile’s natural beauty—and to protect inner layers from further damage, including infection. Following treatment, it is important to maintain a consistent routine of brushing and flossing, and regular visits to your dentist.

“I Chipped My Tooth? Where Should I Go?”

Because chipped and cracked teeth can vary so widely, you need to make sure that you choose a dentist that knows what to do with any type of chipped tooth. Your oral care is too important to trust to just any dentist. You need a dentist who has the best technology, skill set, and team in place to handle your situation.

If you live in Los Angeles, you can’t make a better choice than Exquisite Dentistry. Dr. Aguil knows what to do with your chipped tooth, and you can be confident that your smile will be restored in short order.

Having a chipped tooth is stressful enough, so you’ll want to have your work done in a relaxing, calming environment. Once again, your best choice is Exquisite Dentistry. Our unique dental spa atmosphere helps calm frayed nerves the moment you walk through our doors. Enjoy a cup of coffee or soothing herbal tea as you wait in our comfortable waiting room. Once it’s time for you to see Dr. Aguil, you’ll be able to relax in a plush chair with a warm blanket. You can even watch your favorite shows on Netflix on our TV’s using a pair of our noise-canceling headphones. Before you know it, you’ll be on your way home with your chipped tooth expertly repaired.

Do you have more questions about what to do with a chipped tooth? Contact us today and see how Exquisite Dentistry repairs damage and restores your smile’s radiance with advanced cosmetic dentistry.