The worst kind of pain is the one you can’t diagnose; you feel discomfort or sensitivity, but it’s not constant, and you can’t pinpoint exactly why it’s happening. There’s a particular syndrome in dentistry, cracked tooth syndrome, that fits this bill all too well. It occurs when there is a crack in your molar that is deep enough to cause you pain, but small enough to be almost undetectable, even by x-ray. While difficult to diagnose, once cracked tooth syndrome is found out about, it’s quite easy to repair in most cases.
First, you need to know the symptoms of cracked tooth syndrome. You’ll generally feel pain after biting on the affected tooth, or when it’s exposed to temperatures that are hotter or colder than the ambient temperature. The pain won’t be constant like cavity pain; it will only occur in response to stimuli. If you feel inconsistent pain in parts of your mouth, it’s definitely time to see a dentist.
Your dentist will do everything they can to diagnose the problem; they’ll look at your oral health history, perform x-rays, and likely perform a bite test in which they ask you to bite down on objects with a variety of densities and hardnesses. This will allow them to determine the exact location of the problem, so they can scope in on the tooth and see where exactly the crack is. Looking at your oral history helps because there are certain risk factors that increase the likeliness of cracked molars.
Individuals with a history of grinding their teeth are more likely to develop this condition, as are people who have had cracked teeth in the past. Teeth that have undergone a root canal are more likely to crack, as are teeth that have had substantial fillings; pressure from tooth crowding can also increase the likeliness of a tooth cracking. It’s important to go to the dentist yearly in order to keep an up-to-date, exacting history of your oral health; when this is done, it becomes easier to diagnose and treat potential problems.
There’s a wide variety of treatment options once the crack is found, depending on its severity. For a shallow crack, your dentist may simply perform a process known as dental bonding, where a tooth-colored resin is used to fill the crack. Should they suspect further problems from exposure, or if the crack is larger, they may add a dental crown in order to preserve the tooth. Finally, if the crack is quite deep, they may need to perform a root canal in order to clean out and preserve the soft tissue below the enamel.
This hard-to-detect, hard-to-diagnose problem is yet another reason it’s important to see your dentist on a yearly basis. There’s a Winnipeg dental clinic that’s always accepting new clients and dental emergencies; if you don’t have a dentist yet, it’s absolutely the time to get one. Don’t wait until sudden sharp pains shoot through your mouth; keep up on your oral health!