Should You Go to Urgent Care for a Broken Tooth?

Broken Tooth Philadelphia, PA

Figuring out if a broken tooth requires urgent dental care can be challenging if you do not know the signs to look for. Not all breaks classify as an emergency, since some only cause aesthetic damage.

Figuring out how to deal with your broken tooth

A broken tooth is one of the most common dental issues that dentists deal with. It can be caused by several things, like trauma to the face, tooth decay, or biting on something too hard. Here are signs that your broken tooth requires emergency dental care.

1. Excessive bleeding

A broken tooth accompanied by excessive bleeding typically requires urgent dental care. This is usually a sign that the damage to the tooth has left the pulp chamber compromised. As a result, the pulp chamber is vulnerable to infection if treatment is not administered immediately. A dentist can address such damage by performing a root canal to clean out the pulp chamber and covering the restored tooth with a crown for additional protection.

2. Excruciating pain

Dentists do not expect you to deal with excruciating pain while waiting to see them. Any dental injury that causes agonizing pain needs urgent care. The treatment will relieve any pain that the patient is dealing with, while restoring the function and appearance of the tooth.

Excruciating pain coming from a broken tooth is another sign that the pulp chamber has been compromised. Root canals are performed to clean out the nerves and blood vessels in the pulp chamber before covering the tooth with a crown.

3. Sharp edges

A broken tooth with jagged edges that are sharp enough to cut soft tissues in the mouth, like the tongue and cheeks, requires urgent care to prevent the damaged tooth from causing other injuries. Patients can protect their mouth by carefully applying dental wax over the damaged tooth or even a piece of sugarless chewing gum. This works as a temporary fix while heading to the dentist. The dentist can use treatments like composite resin and crowns to cover up the damaged tooth, removing the risk of the sharp edges causing injuries.

Importance of fixing broken teeth

A broken tooth should always be fixed, regardless of if it counts as a dental emergency. Such damage removes portions of the outer layers of teeth, called the enamel, which protects the more vulnerable inner layers. Not addressing a broken tooth leaves it more vulnerable to oral issues like tooth decay and infection. Treatments that are often used to treat minor damage to teeth include:

  • Composite resin: Composite bonding can be used to restore a broken tooth if most of the damage only affects the enamel
  • Veneers: These are tooth-shaped shells that are used to cover the front part of teeth, and they can hide minor chips and breaks
  • Crowns: Crowns are used for more severe breaks, especially those that require a root canal

Get your broken tooth fixed

Dealing with a broken tooth? Call or visit our Philadelphia clinic immediately and get the treatment you need.

Request an appointment here: or call Frankford Dental Care at (215) 302-1746 for an appointment in our Philadelphia office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Emergency Dental Care in Philadelphia, PA.

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