Q:

How do you treat a chipped tooth?

A:

Quick Answer

A chipped tooth must almost always be treated by a dentist as soon as possible after the damage is done. Take emergency precautions to protect the tooth. Call your dentist immediately, and choose from the repair options he offers you.

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Full Answer

  1. Take emergency precautions

    After chipping a tooth, eat only soft foods to prevent further damage to the tooth. Hang on to the piece of chipped-off tooth if you have it until you can take it in to the dentist. Cover any sharp edges with softened chewing gum or paraffin to prevent scratches on the inside of your mouth. Don't bite down on the chipped tooth.

  2. Call your dentist

    Make an emergency appointment with your dentist as a chipped tooth can get worse quickly. Further damage can necessitate a root canal procedure or extraction of the tooth.

  3. Choose from treatment options

    Options available for repairing a chipped tooth include dental bonding, dental veneers or dental crowns. Bonding involves using resin to fill in the chipped-off area so it looks natural; this procedure can typically be done relatively quickly and without anesthesia. Veneers are most often used for front teeth. Dental crowns can be made of porcelain, metal or resin and provide a long-lasting solution. Your dentist's recommendation is based on the specifics of the damage to your tooth as well as any pain you are feeling.

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