dental care


Repair broken teeth

by Tony, answer by the Dentist

Repair broken teeth can be a challenge since broken teeth often show great loss of tooth substance. If a large enough piece of the tooth breaks off, it can be very painful because the nerve inside the tooth may be injured. One of the readers has a story to tell:

I have a couple of broken and rotted teeth ... Can they be fixed or what are my options?

Dear Tony,
Thank you for submitting your concern about the topic repair broken teeth. Broken teeth can be a result of some kind of trauma or accident, which mostly happens to children falling off their bikes or injuring themselves during playing. Broken teeth can also be a problem for adults, then this is more likely caused by deep caries lesions. Large cavities may have weakened the teeth and made them more susceptibale to breakage. At one point the tooth is so cavitated that it does not bear the chewing force any longer; suddenly a bit of the tooth goes off. If the nerve is exposed it can be very painful. If this happens in the anterior region, it can be even harder to tackle because it is obviously very visible.

Fixing broken teeth demands a thorough clinical and x-ray examination. All parts of the teeth and the rest of the chewing apparatus must be examined to make sure the best and most accurate treatment is given. In some cases one can build up the tooth using resin material (tooth shade filling material) which often gives a good functional result and has a nice appearance - and it's not too expensive. However, this will not last forever and one may have to change the build-up several times during a lifespan. In other cases crowns or veneers are better options. They have a better appearance than resin build-ups and usually last longer. On the other hand they are more expensive. If the pulp (nerve and blood tissue inside the tooth) is exposed and therefore injured, one needs to do a root canal treatment before the broken tooth can be build up with a resin material or a crown.

In either case, the dentist will make an individual treatment plan for you and your broken teeth. Good luck with repair broken teeth!

Best regards, the Dentist

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