Cracked and Fractured Teeth
Because people are living longer and dentists are helping keep teeth longer, teeth are being exposed to years of crack inducing habits. Particularly, clenching, grinding and chewing hard things such as ice can result in cracks and fractures in teeth. Typically, teeth with cracks/fractures do not show on radiographs (x-rays). Hence, cracked and fractured teeth can especially be difficult to locate. When the outer hard tissues of a tooth are fractured or cracked, chewing can cause movement of the pieces and the pulp becomes irritated. Often this results in a momentary, sharp pain which eventually progresses to include thermal sensitivity. In time, the cracked or fractured tooth, similar to other teeth with pulp degeneration, can begin to hurt on its own.