I Broke a Tooth. What Should I Do?

Breaking a tooth is a serious problem, even if it only seems like a little chip or crack. Our team at South Bay Prosthodontics in Torrance, California, specializes in restorative dental techniques to repair broken, damaged, or missing teeth. If you chip, crack, or break off a piece of a tooth, we recommend taking these steps immediately.

Contact our office

First off, call our office to schedule an appointment, especially if you’ve broken off a chunk of your tooth. We provide emergency dental care for issues that require urgent attention. Plus, we can give you detailed instructions on how to proceed until your appointment.

Rinse your mouth

Whether you’ve broken your tooth chewing on a piece of ice or suffered trauma to your face, thoroughly rinse your mouth with warm water as soon as possible. This soothes irritation and flushes away infection-causing bacteria.

Apply a compress

A cracked or broken tooth can cause swelling or bleeding. If you have bleeding inside your mouth, try applying gentle pressure to the area with gauze or a wet tea bag. To reduce swelling, we recommend pressing a cool compress to the outside area every few minutes.

Look for the broken piece

If you’ve broken off a part of a tooth and you’re able to retrieve it, wrap it in a wet piece of gauze and bring it to your appointment. If the broken tooth looks dirty, rinse it off with water but don’t use other solutions to clean it. It’s also important not to scrub the tooth or remove any tissue.

Protect your mouth

Having a broken tooth can leave jagged or sharp edges in your mouth. To avoid cutting your tongue, cheek, or the inside of your lip, cover the remaining piece of tooth with dental wax, a wet tea bag, or a piece of gauze. You should also skip chewing or flossing in the area until your dental appointment to avoid breaking off more of the tooth.

Control your pain

Even a small chip can cause intense pain. To find relief, continue flushing the inside of your mouth with warm water and apply cold compresses to your face every few minutes. You can also take over-the-counter anti-inflammatories and pain relievers as directed.

Repair the damage

Without treatment, a chipped, cracked, or broken tooth can worsen or become infected. Our team has advanced training in cosmetic treatments, including those for restoring broken teeth.

Whether you have damage in a highly visible area or on the hard surface of a molar, we can restore the strength and function of your tooth while preserving the appearance of your smile.

Common treatments for broken teeth include:

For severe breaks, we could suggest removing the remaining portion of your tooth and replacing it with a dental bridge or implant. We also offer sedation dentistry services, so you don’t have to be afraid or anxious about receiving dental care.

If you break a tooth, don’t wait to make an appointment. Contact our office by calling 310-378-9261.

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