So You Have a Chipped Tooth. Here Are Your Options.

April 2, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — drruiz @ 8:40 pm

So you’ve found yourself with a chipped tooth. Whether it’s from biting down on something unexpectedly hard or another accident, it can happen to anyone, although that doesn’t make it any less frustrating. Luckily, though, you have options.

In this article, we’re diving into all the options you have when it comes to dealing with a chipped tooth (as well as the possible reasons why your tooth chipped).

Keep reading.

Causes of chipped teeth

Before going over your treatment options, let’s first review some of the possible causes of chipped teeth so you can avoid them. These include:

  • Cavities which can weaken your tooth and make it easier for you to get a chipped tooth.
  • Biting something hard, like an ice cube or hard candy, can also cause a chipped tooth. Also, avoid using your teeth as tools, like ripping a tag off or opening a bag, since this can also cause a chipped tooth.
  • Other accidents like getting hit in the face or falling on your face can also be enough to chip your tooth.
  • Improper oral care can increase the chances of a chipped tooth.
  • Finally, bruxism, or teeth grinding, can cause chipped teeth. If you’re a grinder, your dentist might recommend a mouth guard to prevent you from damaging your teeth at night.

Chipped teeth treatment options

Like we said, if you have a chipped tooth, you have options to fix it. Let’s go through what these are.


If your chipped tooth is a front tooth or can be seen when you talk or smile, your dentist might use bonding to fix the issue. Bonding is a procedure that uses a tooth-colored composite resin and does not even require numbing. To bond a tooth, a dentist will roughen the tooth by etching the surface with a liquid or gel, then apply adhesive material to the tooth, followed by tooth-colored resin. They will then shape the bonding material to look like a natural tooth and harden it with ultraviolet light. Dental bonds can usually last up to 10 years with proper care.

Tooth reattachment

If you have a chipped tooth and were able to save the tooth fragment that broke off, your dentist may be able to cement it back onto your tooth. For the best chance of success, though, keep the fragment moist and try to get to your dentist immediately.

Porcelain Veneers

Another possible option for you, if you have a chipped tooth, is to get a veneer. A porcelain dental veneer is a tooth-colored porcelain shell that covers the front of a tooth. To prepare your tooth for the veneer, your dentist will typically remove about 0.5 millimeters of your tooth, then take an impression of your tooth to send to the laboratory that will then make the veneer. You may be given a temporary veneer while you wait. Once the veneer is ready, your dentist will bond it to your tooth. Porcelain veneers typically last from 10 to 20 years.

Dental Crowns

A dentist may also suggest that you get a crown to fix your chipped tooth, especially if a large piece breaks off or it has decay. A dental crown is essentially a tooth-shaped cap that protects your tooth and can look identical to your original tooth depending on the material used. A dental crown will typically last between 5 to 15 years.

Dental Onlays

A dental onlay is similar to a crown, although it covers only the cusp of your tooth, which is the elevated part of it, while a dental crown covers the tooth surface. A dental crown is the more conservative option of the two and may be suggested if there is less damage.

Root canal therapy

If your tooth is very badly chipped, enough to expose the pulp, which is the center of the tooth that contains nerves and blood vessels, bacteria can enter and affect the pulp. In this case, root canal therapy may be needed to remove the dead pulp, clean the root canal, then seal it. The tooth will then need to be capped with a restoration, often a crown.

Visit Dr. Ruiz & Associates for a cosmetic dentist in Burbank

If you’re in the Burbank area and have a chipped tooth, come visit our dentist office, Dr. Ruiz & Associates. Dr. Ruiz is a respected dentist, educator, and researcher who focuses on supra-gingival, minimally invasive healthy dentistry. He has even developed a smile design technique that dentists all around the world use.

Check out our Google reviews and schedule an appointment with us today!

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