A Guide to Broken Tooth or cracked tooth

guide to broken tooth and cracked tooth for emergency dentist

Causes of a Broken Tooth

Throughout our lives, our teeth undergo a considerable amount of wear and tear. Wear and can happen from chewing, grinding, clenching, and from the foods, we eat. Due to this repetitive action that places stress on the teeth, many patients will experience a broken tooth at some point throughout their lifetime. Emergency dentists in Lincoln, NE are here to help.

Trauma from sports-related injuries or other accidents, tooth decay, and untreated, periodontal disease can also contribute to risk factors for a broken tooth. When tooth decay spreads to the inner parts of a tooth, it destroys healthy tooth structure. When healthy tooth structure is weak, it makes the tooth more vulnerable to fracture. If the decay has progressed significantly, merely chewing soft food can cause the remaining tooth structure to crumble.

cracked tooth and broken tooth by emergency dentist lincoln, ne

Emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE, discusses tooth fractures: 

Some fractures require immediate treatment. Patients may require immediate treatment if the fracture is close to the nerve of the tooth. Your emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE, can monitor other fractures that are more superficial. While the tooth itself may not be severely damaged,  a fracture can be just as severe. Call your Emergency Dentist in Lincoln, NE if you are unsure about the severity of a broken tooth. Otherwise, if you would like to schedule an appointment with a particular dentist, please visit this link to see available locations and dentist.

Surface cracks:

Many patients have multiple surface fracture lines present in the enamel portion of the teeth. Often, patients do not know these cracks are present unless the dentist mentions them at a checkup. Symptoms are not usually associated with these types of cracks. It is not necessary for patients to see an emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE, for this type of crack. An excellent course of action for surface cracks in the enamel is to maintain good oral hygiene at home. Another great way to maintain oral health is to visit your dental provider at least twice a year. You can also wear a custom nightguard to protect your teeth from further damage if you find that you are grinding them at night.


A chip in the enamel of the tooth is usually not cause for concern. Small chips generally do not cause sensitivity. If the chip is sensitive, it is likely because the fracture has affected the inner layer of the tooth. Patients may want to address chips in front teeth if they change the aesthetic appearance of their smile. Often a composite filling can be placed to repair small chips. Waiting too long to correct the tooth can mean that it is possible that the rough surface of the chip can harbor bacteria and a cavity can form. If you chip a tooth and are concerned, your after-hours emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE will gladly take a look. We’ll help guide you and find the treatment that would be most beneficial.

Broken cusp:

A broken tooth with a broken cusp is more severe than small chips in the enamel. Broken cusps may cause sensitivity or lead to further breakdown of the remaining tooth structure. Using white fillings for repair is common depending upon how severe the fracture. To protect a tooth that has fractured significantly, placing a full-coverage crown may be necessary. Many times, it seems that certain things never happen during regular business hours and your emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE, is here to help.

Cracked tooth:

As mentioned previously, small surface cracks typically do not require any treatment. Crowns protect teeth that have cracks that have progressed past the first layer of tooth structure and just into the dentin. Crowns will strengthen the tooth to withstand forces from biting and chewing and prevent further damage. If a crack has progressed further into the tooth it may affect the pulp or roots of a tooth. Cracks of this nature usually cause a significant amount of discomfort, especially when a patient bites down. If the crack has entered the innermost layer of the tooth and affected the nerve, it allows bacteria from the oral cavity to enter into this area. Certain bacteria can cause the nerve to become inflamed, and the tooth may become infected. This situation may require treatment from your emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE.
In some cases, a root canal can be performed to save the tooth. Root canal treatment allows the dentist to remove the living part of your tooth, so that it no longer causes discomfort. After the root canal, a crown will be placed to protect your tooth.

ibuprofen to help broken tooth pain

What can you do at home?

If you have a broken tooth or even a cracked tooth, and it is causing you discomfort, call your emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE at Nebraska Family Dentistry. Schedule an appointment as soon as possible to help prevent further damage or infection. In the meantime, take on over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen. When you arrive at your appointment, we will take x-rays and discuss treatment options with you. If your tooth is infected or at risk of becoming infected, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. Find out more about anti-inflammatory medications here.

Ohara Lincoln Ne emergency dentist to help Broken Tooth

What can your Emergency Dentist in Lincoln, NE do?

Removal of a broken tooth is a possibility if the fracture is significant. If there is still a good portion of healthy tooth structure, your dentist may be able to place a crown. If the fracture has involved the nerve of your tooth, a root canal may need to be performed to help save the tooth.

A root canal is essentially a filling that extends to the ends of the roots of a tooth. Performing a root canal is done once an infected nerve is taken out. Afterward, a crown should be placed to strengthen the tooth.

cavity a for Broken Tooth emergency dentist lincoln ne

cavity b for Broken Tooth emergency dentist lincoln ne

cavity c for Broken Tooth emergency dentist lincoln ne

Root canals are typically the last effort that can be taken to save a tooth. When possible, it is always preferable to keep our natural teeth rather than extract them. Extracting a tooth with severe decay and infection may be necessary. Removing this tooth will help prevent infection from spreading to surrounding teeth. If you have a broken or cracked tooth that is causing discomfort, we would be happy to help you with your dental emergency. We have an emergency dentist in Lincoln, NE on-call for after-hours and weekend emergency care.