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Broken Dental Crown? Here's What You Should Do

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Dental crowns are designed to last for up to 15 years with the right care and maintenance, but that's not to say that people won't occasionally experience issues from time to time. When it comes to crowns, the most common issue that an individual is likely to face is it cracking, something that can happen after enough wear and tear has been exerted on it. Crowns have the tendency to break at any time, but they're more prone to cracking if you're a regular consumer of crunchy foods or if you're a teeth grinder. The good news about a cracked crown is that it's typically not an emergency situation. The bad news is that it might look unsightly and there might be some mild discomfort until a dentist has a chance to address the issue. Here's a closer look at what to do if a dental crown breaks on you:

My Dental Crown Just Cracked. What Do I Do?

  1. Check out the area: Head to your nearest mirror and see if you can get a glimpse of the cracked crown. Feel it with your tongue to gauge any sensitivity. If the crown is loose and you're not feeling any pain, you may even elect to remove the crown before it has a chance to fall off on its own. This way, you don't risk accidentally swallowing it. 
  2. Assess pain levels: Whether you remove the cracked crown or leave it in place, you'll want to determine what - if any - pain or discomfort you're experiencing. Is the area sensitive when you breathe in air? Are there jagged edges that could lead to scrapes and cuts within the mouth? If all appears well, you don't have to take action immediately. However, if you're in pain and the cracked crown doesn't look good, we'd advise getting into your dentist immediately. If pain is low or moderate, some over-the-counter pain killers can help keep you comfortable until you can get into the dentist.
  3. Call your dentist: If you're not in pain and don't mind living with a cracked crown or exposed tooth for a few days, there's really no rush to get into your dentist. Yes, you should get in within a week or two, but there isn't the sense of urgency that there should be if your cracked crown is causing pain or discomfort. Upon seeing your dentist, the cracked crown will either be repaired or replaced depending on the situation.

It's never ideal to experience a cracked crown, but it's also important to remember that everything has a shelf life. Dental crowns are no exception. For more information on dental crowns and what to do if one breaks on you, contact Caven Dental today.

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