Dental emergencies come in all shapes and sizes. Some hurt, some don’t. Some are bloody, others are not. Some are obvious, some lurk for a while before they suddenly become a painful problem. When you have a lost filling or crown, it’s clear that you have an oral health complication, but what should you do about it?
Prioritize the Cosmetic Dental Emergency
For many people who lose a dental filling or crown, the most acute problem is that this issue affects their appearance. Their smile has been compromised by a lost dental restoration and now they have an oddly shaped tooth, an unsightly gap, or a hole in their tooth. The cosmetic aspect of this problem is number one for the person dealing with it, but you must remember that a filling or crown was put in place for a reason – likely, to correct or cover a damaged or compromised tooth. That is the problem that needs to be repaired above all. The cosmetic benefits will come with it.
Reasons for a Lost Filling or Crown
There are many possible reasons for a lost filling or crown, including:
- Biting down wrong on something: Whether you’re eating something hard or using your teeth to open a package, the wrong move at the wrong time can snap your restoration right out of place.
- Grinding and clenching your teeth: This chronic bad habit can usually only be stopped with a customized nightguard, otherwise more teeth are likely to be damaged by the force of your teeth against each other.
- Getting hit in the mouth: Whether a car accident or sports match or a hit from a toddler’s plastic toy, any hit to the mouth can knock a solid crown or filling out of place.
- The age of the restoration: Crowns and fillings are meant to last for decades, but if it’s been this long or more, the longevity of your restoration can be easily compromised.
Dental Restorations for Lost Fillings or Crowns
Losing a filling or crown is inconvenient, unsightly, and, sometimes, a little frightening. Contact your Healdsburg dentist right away about this dental emergency and be prepared to receive one of the following dental restorations:
- New filling: A lost filling may be replaced with a strong, natural-looking, composite filling. If the tooth is severely compromised by the lost filling, a crown may be the better and longer lasting replacement.
- New porcelain crown: It is unlikely that your dentist will try to reattach your lost dental crown, especially if you have had your crown for decades. A new crown can be customized instead and bonded permanently in place.
- Root canal therapy: If you have waited to report your lost filling or crown to your Healdsburg dentist, then your tooth has been left open to bacteria and other problems may have developed that require treatment like root canal therapy first.
- Nightguard: If your damaged dental work is caused by teeth grinding, your dentist will recommend a customized nightguard to prevent the problem from reoccurring or affecting other teeth.
If you have a lost filling, crown, or other dental emergency, contact Dr. Tam at Healdsburg Dental Spa in Healdsburg, CA, to schedule an emergency dental appointment.