This is a common question over the Internet. Do cracked teeth require dental treatment?
Yes, we know that dental offices can present dramatic images on their computers that clearly show your teeth to have cracks. These certainly can be unaltered images. However, the existence of cracks alone is not at all a reason to perform treatment. Other factors need to be considered.
In one example, if the crack is more horizontal than vertical in orientation, it may well point to the real potential for part of the tooth to break away. These teeth may very well be recommended for a crown.
In a second example, if a tooth provides an instant sharp pain to biting on it, or to letting go of the bite on the tooth, the crack has a depth that may lead to more severe problems. In this case, a crown would be prudent if no other factors are found, like loose restorations or fillings.
In a third example, if the cracks are only vertical in orientation and there are no other symptoms or signs, then I would generally not recommend any dental treatment. This is a very common occurrence in teeth that are magnified by our digital images. Yes, these cracks may be dramatic. However, with no other symptoms or signs, I would not suggest treatment.
In a last example, if a posterior tooth (premolar or molar) has had root canal therapy, and does not have a crown, then I would recommend a crown whether or not cracks are present. In these back teeth, root canal treatment is always highly recommended to be followed up with protection by a crown.
Should a grinding, clenching, or bruxing habit be associated with cracked teeth, we would definitely recommend a custom-made night guard. We have made hundreds of these, and these save patients thousands of dollars in potential dental treatment fees.
If you have any further questions, feel free to contact us. If you would like an appointment, please do contact us by calling (972) 250-2580. Feel free to also peruse our website, which is written and published by our owner-dentist, Dr. Mark Venincasa.
Thank you for your interest.