THERE ISN’T JUST one way to crack a tooth. How severe the damage is will determine how or if it can be treated. For a serious crack, we can make a plan to save the whole tooth or part of it, or we can recommend the next steps to take for a minor crack.
Like the fine cracks that form in glazed pottery, these affect only the enamel of a tooth and don’t require treatment. Bleaching can disguise them.
A weakened cusp or point of a tooth can eventually fracture. It’s rare for the damage to reach the pulp, so it can usually be restored with a simple crown, no need for root canal therapy.
Treatable Cracked Tooth
Cracks from the chewing surface down towards and beyond the gumline tend to get worse. The tooth needs fast treatment before it gets to the pulp, or it will take root canal therapy to save it.
If a split breaks a tooth completely into multiple pieces, even endodontic treatment can’t save the whole tooth, but it may be possible to save a portion.
Vertical Root Fracture
A fracture beginning from the root going up is the hardest to discover. Extraction may be necessary unless endodontic surgery can save part of the tooth.