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Understanding Cracked Tooth Syndrome: Causes and Symptoms


Have you ever experienced an inexplicable toothache that seems to come and go, making it difficult to pinpoint the source of your discomfort? If so, you might be one of the many individuals who have encountered the mysterious dental dilemma known as cracked tooth syndrome.

This enigmatic condition often eludes initial diagnosis and can leave you grappling with intermittent pain and sensitivity. The cases have risen during the pandemic in 2019.

In order to deal with this issue, consulting a professional dentist is extremely important. And that is where we, family dentistry Tarzana, come in. We provide dental services at our dental office in Tarzana, CA. We achieve this via a team of expert dentists, lead by Dr. Robert Khanian.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the world of cracked tooth syndrome, exploring its causes, symptoms, and the array of treatment options available.

What Is Cracked Tooth Syndrome?

Before we unravel the complexities of cracked tooth syndrome, it’s essential to define precisely what it entails. Cracked tooth syndrome refers to a dental condition in which a tooth sustains a crack or fracture, typically affecting the enamel and sometimes extending into the dentin, the inner layer of the tooth.

This condition is known for its ability to manifest a range of perplexing symptoms that make diagnosis challenging. Often, patients experience discomfort that seems to come and go, making it difficult to identify the precise source of their dental distress.

An image showing a man experiencing pain due tocracked tooth syndrome

Understanding the different types of cracks and underlying causes is pivotal in recognizing cracked tooth syndrome.

What Are The 3 Common Types of Cracks?

Cracks in teeth are not one-size-fits-all. They come in various forms, each with its unique characteristics and implications.

1. Fractured Cusps:

This type of crack typically affects the pointed chewing surfaces (cusps) of molars. They often occur due to dental fillings that have weakened the tooth’s structure.

2. Craze Lines:

These are tiny cracks that appear on the enamel, the outermost layer of the tooth. Craze lines are generally superficial and seldom cause pain.

3. Split Teeth:

Split teeth represent the most severe form of cracking, where the tooth separates into distinct segments, and the crack extends vertically through the tooth. This condition typically requires immediate dental intervention.

What Are The 5 Common Causes Of Cracked Tooth Syndrome?

Understanding how these cracks develop can help you avoid potential triggers. Common causes of cracked tooth syndrome include:

1. Biting Hard Objects:

Chewing on hard substances like ice, popcorn kernels, or pens can exert excessive force on teeth, leading to cracks.

2.  Grinding (Bruxism):

Habitual teeth grinding, especially during sleep, can weaken tooth structure over time and contribute to cracking.

3. Trauma:

Accidents or injuries that involve a blow to the mouth can result in cracked teeth.

4. Temperature Changes:

Rapid shifts between hot and cold temperatures, such as sipping a hot beverage and immediately biting into ice, can cause cracks due to the expansion and contraction of tooth enamel.

5. Age:

Aging can naturally weaken teeth, making them more susceptible to cracking.

An image showing an old man experiencing pain due to cracked tooth syndrome

What Are The Telltale Signs of Cracked Tooth Syndrome?

Cracked tooth syndrome presents a spectrum of symptoms, and not all patients will experience the same degree of discomfort. However, some common indicators include:

1. Sensitivity to Temperature:

One of the hallmark signs of cracked tooth syndrome is sensitivity to hot or cold substances. You may experience a sharp, sudden pain when consuming items like ice cream or hot coffee.

2. Pain While Chewing:

Discomfort or pain when biting or chewing is a prevalent symptom. This pain can be sporadic and difficult to predict.

3. Erratic Pain:

Cracked tooth syndrome is often characterized by pain that comes and goes. The inconsistency in symptoms can make diagnosis challenging.

How Can Dentists Treat Cracked Tooth Syndrome?

Treatment for cracked tooth syndrome largely depends on the severity and extent of the crack. Various options are available, ranging from conservative approaches to more invasive procedures.

An image showing a dentist from All Smiles Family Dentistrytreating a patient with cracked tooth syndrome

Dental Bonding:

For superficial cracks or craze lines, dental bonding is a minimally invasive option. A tooth-colored resin is applied to the affected area and then shaped and polished to match your tooth’s appearance.

Dental Crowns:

When a tooth sustains a more significant crack, a dental crown may be recommended. Crowns provide structural support and protect the tooth from further damage.

Root Canal Therapy:

In cases where the crack extends into the tooth’s pulp, a root canal may be necessary. This will involve removing the damaged pulp, cleaning the area, and sealing it.

Tooth Extraction:

In extreme cases where the tooth is severely compromised and cannot be saved, extraction may be the only option. Tooth extraction is typically followed by restorative measures like dental implants or bridges to replace lost teeth.

Trust The Expertise Of All Smiles Family Dentistry’s Professional Dentists

Regular dental check-ups and preventive measures play a crucial role in preserving your teeth and preventing the discomfort associated with cracked tooth syndrome.

At All Smiles Family Dentistry, we offer top-standard preventive and emergency dentistry services. We serve the areas of emergency dentistry and Encino, CA, diagnosing and providing treatments for their dental issues via dental crowns and more.

So, schedule a dentist appointment online and get rid of cracked tooth syndrome now.

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