Dental crowns are designed to last anywhere from 5-15 years, so it’s never a good feeling when you run your tongue over your crown and realize something is wrong. There’s no need to panic if you discover there is an issue with your crown. Most of the time, a damaged cap won’t even lead to pain.
That doesn’t mean you should ignore a broken dental crown. While it isn’t usually a dental emergency, it is still something you need to take care of as soon as possible. Your crown was installed to serve a specific purpose, typically protecting broken and otherwise damaged teeth or as a replacement for a lost tooth.
Failing to take care of a broken cap could lead to significantly more serious dental issues down the road. Not to mention, the minor inconveniences it causes such as sensitivity to extreme temperatures and difficulty eating.
How do dental crowns get broken?
Dental crowns are typically made out of strong materials like ceramic, porcelain, and gold, but none of these come anywhere close to being as strong as your natural teeth. Your teeth are actually the strongest substance in your body, way stronger than your bones.
Since we all know natural teeth can be chipped, broken, or otherwise damaged, it is not surprising that artificial teeth can also get damaged as well. All it takes is some ice cubes or un-popped popcorn kernels. Bad habits like grinding/clenching your teeth can also lead to the deterioration of your crown.
Crowns are designed to last anywhere between 5-15 years, and they will eventually get damaged with time. That’s why it’s important to follow the replacement schedule set aside by your dentist.
Things to do when your crown is damaged
If you notice there is something wrong with your crown, the first thing you want to do is make a proper assessment of the damage.
Stand in front of a mirror and take a close look at the affected tooth. If the crown is loosely attached to your teeth, pull it off since you can end up accidentally swallowing it, leading to a whole new set of problems.
Gently run a finger across the affected tooth, checking for edges that are sharp enough to cut the insides of your mouth or your tongue. The sharper the edges of the crown – or the tooth it was placed on – the more serious the damage to your dental crown is.
Once you’re done with your examination, rinse your mouth with warm water. Next, it’s time to call a dentist to discuss the findings of your examination and schedule a visit.
If you experience mild pain, consider using over-the-counter pain medication. If the pain is severe or there’s lots of bleeding, schedule an emergency visit with a dentist.
There you have it, there’s no need to be alarmed if you end up with a broken dental crown. If you’re dealing with a broken crown, contact a dentist and schedule a visit so it can be repaired or replaced as soon as possible.
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