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Do I Need to See an Emergency Dentist for a Broken Crown?

Broken Crown - Do I need to see Emergency Dentist

Dental Crowns last for years, often lasting longer than the tooth they are covering, but accidents can happen that cause a dental crown to break or fall out. When this happens, having the right knowledge on how to deal with it can help keep you healthy and avoid further complications.  

As your local family dentist near Allen, TX,  Dr. Feng and her experienced team is here to help and explain what steps you need to take if your dental crown breaks or falls off.

WHAT TO DO AFTER LOSING OR BREAKING YOUR CROWN – STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE

It’s important to understand that if a crown breaks, or your temporary crown has fallen out, you need not be alarmed.  If you are in serious discomfort, you may consider seeing an emergency dentist right away for treatment as it could be a sign of more serious oral health concerns.

  • Check the severity of the issue. The best way to do this is to find a mirror, rather than simply feeling around with the tongue.  Assess the damage to see if there are sharp edges that can cut the inside of your mouth.
  • Whether your crown is broken and or fallen out of your mouth, retrieve it and keep it for the dentist. Depending on the treatment required, it may be possible to reattach it instead of making a new one.  
  • Call your local Allen dentist at (972) 468-1440 to schedule your appointment.  Tell us what happened, and Dr. Feng will see you as soon as she can. 
  • If you are bleeding, place a piece of gauze to apply pressure to the damaged tooth.
  • If you are experiencing pain related to a broken or lost crown, there are many over-the-counter (OTC) pain relief options such as ibuprofen. A topical pain reliever like Orajel can also be used as well.  
  • Avoid hot or cold foods as you may experience tooth sensitivity if your tooth pulp is exposed.
  • Gently rinse your mouth out with a warm glass of saltwater to keep bacteria away and soothe any irritation. 

Common reasons a dental crown breaks

Dental crowns are strong, but like your natural teeth, a dental crown can be damaged just like normal teeth.  Some of the common reasons a dental crown can break is due to…

  • Force trauma to the area – Getting hit in the mouth may cause damage to your crown resulting in breaking off
  • Grinding your teeth (bruxism) – Dental crowns provide a sturdy foundation for your teeth and protect them from further damage, but they are not as durable as natural teeth. While dental crowns are made of strong materials, even a crown can be weakened if it is worn all the time or under severe physical stress. Wearing braces or grinding your teeth can cause erosion in dental crowns, so always wear your protective night guard when you go to bed.
  • Tooth structure becomes weakened – Dental crowns cover and protect a tooth with damage or decay. Also, the dentist will need to remove some of the original tooth to make room for the crown. If the tooth wears down, the crown can become loose.
  • Normal wear and tear – While dental crowns consist of strong and durable materials, the dental cement that holds them in place may eventually wear away and fall off. We can easily address this issue by cementing your crown back in place.
  • Tooth decay – While crowns are made of strong materials, their design often leaves them undamaged by acids in the mouth. A crown can be damaged if tooth decay occurs underneath the crown where it will grow into your natural tooth eventually destroying it.
  • Eating sticky foods – In general, people with dental crowns are advised to avoid eating sticky foods. The stickiness of these foods can damage a crown and make it fall out. If your crown comes out, we will need to re-cement it into place.

How to prevent damaging a dental crown

Dental crowns are a long-lasting way to protect damaged teeth and improve appearance. When given proper care, they can last a lifetime. To keep them in top shape, be sure to brush, floss, and use mouthwash daily. If possible, avoid eating hard foods that may damage the tooth or dental crown. Also remember to visit the dentist for regular checkups and cleanings.