Chipped teeth are common. Small chips might occur as part of the daily wear and tear on our teeth. In other cases chips might occur if you have an accident involving your teeth. Sometimes a chip occurs because there is another problem with a tooth such as a cavity or a bite problem: larger chips are more likely in these cases.
Small chips that occur in the outer enamel shell, but feel rough can sometimes just be smoothed. However, smoothing the tooth might not be appropriate if there is a cosmetic problem, or the chip is causing sensitivity.
If necessary, small to medium size chips can be repaired with adhesive filling material. This is often quick and not particularly invasive. The colour of the repair material will be chosen to match your tooth and bonded into the chip. Often, no drilling and no injection will be needed with this approach. The repair will be set before you leave our clinic, ready for you to eat and drink. The adhesive filling materials we use are so good that a very cosmetic result will be obtained.
Sometimes a chip is very extensive and a significant chunk of tooth is missing. In other instances, a chip might be due to a much larger underlying cavity. In these situations a crown may be required to return your tooth to its correct shape and for it to be strong enough for your bite. Filling materials only perform well up to a certain size of chip, or cavity: and they do not protect vulnerable teeth against further breakage. Crowns are made outside the mouth from a very strong ceramic and cover the entire tooth. This approach reinforces vulnerable teeth as well as repairing large chips.
Front teeth with large chips sometimes require veneers. The principle is similar to that of a crown, but provides a facing rather than covering the entire tooth. Due to the unique shape of front teeth compared to back teeth, this can be a better option than a crown.
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