Chipped teeth cause a number of cosmetic issues, this is true, and having a seriously chipped tooth may make you self-conscious about smiling and speaking around others, even people that have known you for years. That's why Incredible Smiles of Texas in San Antonio offers a number of cosmetic and restorative dentistry treatments for chipped teeth.
In addition to the aesthetic flaws, it's important to note that a chipped tooth can mean major structural issues with a tooth, resulting in a serious break of some kind if the chip goes untreated. Due to regular wear and tear on a tooth, major tooth damage becomes more likely as time goes on. There are different treatments available for varying levels of tooth damage.
Dental Bonding: A Fix for Minor Chips
When a tooth has a minor chip to address, the best option is the use of dental bonding. Dental bonding involves the application of a tooth-colored resin onto the chipped portion of the tooth. The resin blends in with your tooth structure, helping the tooth look repaired and the chip masked.
Porcelain Veneers: Ideal for Masking Imperfections
Porcelain veneers are ideal for more serious chips that are still predominantly cosmetic in nature. With a porcelain veneer in place, aesthetic flaws can be dealt with simply. Porcelain veneers are thin shells of dental ceramic that are semi-transluscent. These shells fit right over the damaged tooth, masking an imperfection from view. Porcelain veneers are also ideal for stains, gaps, and issues with spacing and symmetry.
Inlays and Onlays: When a Chip is Severe
More serious chips are best addressed using inlays or onlays. These kinds of restorations are similar to dental fillings, but they are larger and able to repair a larger portion of a tooth's structure, including the cusps (biting surfaces).
Dental Crowns: Saving a Tooth That's Been Extremely Damaged
For major chips that compromise a tooth severely, the ideal option is a dental crown. Dental crowns are caps that fit over a tooth that has been serious damaged. When in place, a dental crown is able to prevent pain and discomfort, restore the tooth's biting strength, and preserve the tooth where it is.
Tooth Extraction: When a Chipped Tooth Cannot Be Saved
In cases of severe chips, it may not be ideal to save a tooth from extraction. In such cases the best option to consider is a tooth extraction. When a tooth is extracted, your dentist can discuss your options for tooth replacement in greater detail.
Tips for Preventing a Chipped Tooth
In order to prevent chipped teeth, consider the following tips:
- Wear mouth protection during combat and contact sports
- Wear a helmet when riding a bicycle, skateboard, motorcycle
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once a night
- Avoid biting your fingernails and nibbling on hard/inedible objects
- Do not use your teeth to open packaging
Contact Dr. Chris Reger to Learn More
If you have a chipped tooth and would like to learn about your treatment options, be sure to contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. The entire team here at Incredible Smiles of Texas will work closely with you to improve your dental health and the beauty of your smile.