Vertical Tooth Root Fractures Explained

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Over time teeth experience wear and tear just like any other part of your body. This can lead to degradation of materials and the possibility of cracks. A vertical root fracture is one of the five different cracked tooth types. As the name implies, this type of break travels from the very bottom of the root all the way up to the top exposed surface. Although some discomfort may exist, many people do not notice this type of damage. They may only seek treatment after infection, swelling, and pain begins.

Common Causes of Vertical Root Fractures

Any cracks occur more readily in weak teeth that have already sustained damage, have had a root canal, fillings, crowns or caps, or other restorative work. They can occur to healthy teeth if they experience trauma, you bite down on a hard object like ice or candy, or if nearby teeth are already cracked or loose. They sometimes occur during root canal procedures. You may notice it happening if you hear a pop, experience a burst of pain, and the area around the tooth begins to bleed.

Vertical Root Fracture Symptoms

As mentioned above, when a tooth is first fractured, there may not be any noticeable issues. Possible symptoms include general discomfort or a sharp twinge of pain when biting or chewing, a visible crack during a dental examination, swelling, and abscess, or boil near the tooth indicating an infection, or a pocket in the gum next to the tooth in question.

A dentist should notice if a vertical root fracture occurs during a root canal procedure. If this happens, they may order x-rays to identify the exact extent of the damage. Another diagnostic option is a process called transillumination. This uses a special light that shines around and through teeth and highlights breakage and cracks.

Treatment Options for Vertical Root Fractures

After diagnosis, dentists can offer multiple treatment options.  One of the simplest involves bonding the tooth itself using dental cement or another type of adhesive. This will stop the fracture from getting worse and can help prevent other physical damage. Unfortunately, this only works in some cases, another option is getting a tooth extraction.  Taking care of these issues sooner than later minimizes the chance of getting a potentially serious infection. Any existing infection can grow easily with a vertical root fracture and damage the surrounding tissue including the jawbone. With a healthy bone, you may be a candidate for a dental implant to replace the lost tooth.

One of the best ways to alleviate potentially serious problems caused by vertical root fracture is to avoid getting one in the first place. Take proper care of your teeth to prevent the need for fillings and root canal. Regular dental checkups for cleaning will detect any cavities and other issues before they become expensive problems.  Discuss all your options if your dental team suggests a root canal to help avoid fractures and structural tooth weakness.

If you experience any of the symptoms described above, schedule an appointment with Sahara Dental as soon as possible. They will diagnose your of vertical root fracture or other problem and suggest appropriate treatment options.  Remember, their goal is to ensure proper teeth health and function now and for many years to come.

Top Solutions to Replace One or More Missing Teeth

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One or more missing teeth can make it impossible to chew food correctly, may affect the positioning and health of nearby teeth, and can destroy your self-confidence quite easily. This is especially true if you lose one of your front teeth necessary to give you an attractive smile. Professional dentists can help restore a good-looking and functional mouth with these top solutions for replacing missing teeth.

Dental Implants
Dentists and patients alike overwhelmingly prefer implants for their ability to closely match existing teeth and offer a permanent solution that needs no real special care. Whether you are missing one or multiple teeth, you can get individual dental implants to replace them.

The process involves attaching a post to your jawbone to anchor a false tooth to the top. In the end, they look nearly indistinguishable from natural teeth. The main drawback involves a higher cost than other options. Nevertheless, dental implants remain one of the most popular ways to manage your mouth if you have lost one or more teeth.  Dental implants are generally permanent and will last the rest of your life without any need for replacement or other invasive procedures.

Dental Bridge
Multiple types of dental bridges can give you the appearance of natural teeth. These include implant-supported, tooth-supported, and a resin-bonded bridge. As the first two indicate, these are false teeth supported by either implanted teeth on either side or the natural teeth that still exist in your mouth. The third type only works for front teeth that do not do a lot of biting or chewing. The false tooth is attached via wings to teeth on either side rather than with complete caps like a tooth-supported bridge.

Partial Dentures
This removable option to replace one or more missing teeth functions just like a whole denture but leaves open spaces for your existing teeth. This affordable option gives you the appearance of an attractive smile but does require more maintenance than the other options listed above. You will need to remove the dentures and clean them separately from your existing real teeth.

Some people find these uncomfortable or awkward, which makes implants and bridges a better choice. Also, partial dentures may make it difficult to eat certain foods. The focus is mostly on aesthetics and not function.

This temporary option for one or more missing teeth is usually used before one of the above solutions is completed. These molded retainer-style inserts are highly affordable, easy to use, and offers a relatively realistic way to fill gaps in your smile. They do not, however, help with overall mouth structure, protecting other teeth, and they must be removed when you eat.

Speak with your Sahara Dentist about the best options for you when it comes to replacing one or more missing teeth. Whether you opt for implants, a type of bridge, partial dentures or a temporary flipper, you can create a better looking and functioning mouth. The dental technology available today offers more options than ever before for maintaining a healthy and attractive smile.