When you bite down do you feel a sharp pain? Do you have a cracked tooth?
When you bite down do you feel a sharp pain. It quickly disappears and perhaps you ignore it. You avoid foods or chew only on one side of your mouth. Does this sound familiar? If so you may have a cracked tooth. You might not even be able to tell which tooth hurts or whether the pain is from an upper or lower tooth. A crack may appear as a hairline fracture, running vertically along the tooth. It is often invisible to the eye and may not show even on x ray. A cracked tooth may hurt because the pressure of biting causes the crack to open. When you stop biting, the pressure is released and a sharp pain results as the crack quickly closes. Tiny cracks are common and usually do not cause problems. Regular dental appointments are important as they allow your dentist to diagnose and treat problems in the early stage. If you continue to have pain, avoid chewing on that side of your mouth and call your dentist. Depending on the size and location of the crack, treatment may vary from bonding to a crown to hold the crack together. This may include endodontic treatment if a pulp is involved. A severely cracked tooth may need extraction if the tooth cannot be saved. Your dentist will assist you in making the best decision for treatment.
For further reading: www.ada.org