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Why Do Teeth Break?

The chain reaction from one or more broken teeth can be a serious concern, both in function and aesthetics. The symptoms may trickle down from being too embarrassed to smile or speak to affecting the way you bite and chew, or potentially more harmful physical side effects if not treated properly. Broken teeth can occur from naturally becoming too weak and brittle, or they can be caused by a traumatic injury or even certain lifestyle habits. Our experienced team of dentists in Las Vegas understand how these breakages can happen and offer advice on how preventative methods can help, as well as how a customized treatment plan utilizing porcelain dental crowns or other effective options can beautifully restore a broken tooth and help patients achieve the confidence to smile again. Here are some of the most common reasons individuals seek our help for broken teeth at True Dentistry:

Facial Injuries – The impact and excessive force of a facial injury or trauma can be powerful enough to create structural damage that chips or breaks one or several teeth.

Genetics – Several genetic conditions can cause various layers of the tooth to form incorrectly (such as the middle layer, known as dentin, or the outer layer, known as enamel). This can lead to softer, more fragile teeth that can be more easily broken. 

Hard or Crunchy Foods – Forcefully biting down on excessively hard foods, such as ice, nuts, hard candy, popcorn kernels, and crunchy snacks like thick pretzels/chips can lead to weakened teeth and result in a cracked or broken tooth down the road. 

Large or Multiple Fillings – A larger filling in a tooth or a series of fillings in the same dental area can compromise the affected and surrounding tooth structure. Over time, this may create a deteriorated enamel that is more prone to breaking. 

Bruxism – Stress, anxiety, and tension can lead to grinding or clenching your teeth during the day and/or during the night. This continuous pressure can cause enamel to become more brittle and eventually crack, wear down, erode, or break the teeth. 

Certain Foods & Beverages – The acidic properties found in citrus fruits, wine, energy drinks, juices, and vinegar can dissolve the protective tooth enamel and lead to weak and brittle teeth. Sugary drinks and carbonated beverages can produce the same reaction and should be limited in consumption to avoid decomposition.

If you are experiencing symptoms of a broken tooth or are concerned you might be at risk for breaking a tooth, it is best to schedule an appointment for an evaluation and digital x-rays. If the affected tooth needs to be repaired, a custom porcelain crown is often an effective solution to restore the protection, strength, and structure of the tooth with natural-looking results. For teeth that are less severely damaged, porcelain veneers or even simple fillings may be recommended. 

In general, for optimal oral health and to prevent unforeseen tooth breakages, it is important to brush and floss daily and have twice-annual professional cleanings and exams to monitor the condition of your teeth and enamel. Minimizing or avoiding foods and drinks high in acid and sugar, and ensuring you get enough calcium (including vitamins D and K), all play an important role in your dental longevity, as well.

If you have a damaged tooth or are concerned about brittle, weakened enamel and would like to learn more about restorative and preventative dental treatments, please contact us today!