If you are chewing and feel something hard on your tongue (that isn’t part of your food), you probably have had a crown come off of the base of the tooth it is protecting. This can happen when the crown has been on the tooth a long time and, while chewing something sticky, it just comes out. This may be due to the adhesive failing or the enamel that has been supporting the crown begins to decay. It is a bit scary, but don’t panic! Your Fuquay-Varina dentist has put together a list of steps you should take if you have a crown fall out.
Contact Your Dentist
First, you should retrieve the dental crown and store it in a safe place. Then, call your dentist to make an appointment and ask them to get you in a soon as possible. The dentist will either put the crown back onto the tooth or create a brand-new crown. Ask the dentist if there are special instructions that you need to follow until your appointment. Sometimes the dentist will suggest reinserting the crown. If that is the case, you will need to gently clean the inside of the crown with toothpaste first. Then, use a dental adhesive to temporarily glue the crown back in its spot. You can purchase a temporary adhesive at a pharmacy or grocery store. Be very careful when eating and avoid chewing on the crown until you see the dentist.
Treatment After the Crown Falls Out
The dentist will evaluate the site of the crown and the crown itself to determine the reason it became dislodged. Based on what the dentist sees–the integrity of the crown and the status of the tooth–he/she will decide whether to reinstall the crown or to create and install a new one. If the tooth beneath the crown is fractured, it’s possible for the dentist to still use the existing crown. He/she will know the best option.
What Causes a Dental Crown to Come Loose?
Many times you aren’t aware that the crown has become loose until it falls out. There can be a variety of reasons why the crown comes loose. A common reason is that the base of the tooth develops tooth decay. Bacteria grow under the crown and cause decay to get started, especially when some of the cement gets worn or washed away. Decay can affect the way the crown fits the tooth. The crown will become loose and the integrity of the adhesive declines, causing the crown to fall off.
Some other causes of loose crowns include:
- An improperly fitted crown
- Not enough cement holding the crown in place
- Grinding your teeth
- A weakened tooth base
If the crown becomes partially dislodged, go ahead and pull it off of the tooth.
How Can You Prevent a Crown Falling Out?
If the cement has weakened for whatever reason and/or the crown wasn’t properly fitted, there isn’t much you can do. But, you can be diligent in taking care of your crown in order to reduce the chances that it will loosen. Here are some recommendations by the Academy of General Dentistry:
- Don’t chew ice.
- Avoid eating extremely sticky or chewy foods.
- Brush your teeth twice a day.
- Floss regularly.
- Use an interdental brush to remove any plaque from the area where your gum meets the tooth and crown.
If you grind your teeth at night, your dentist may recommend that you wear a mouthguard to protect your crown and your other teeth.
Contact our Local Family Dental Practice to Schedule an Appointment
The team at Hamby Family Dental Center has experience with crowns that come off. We can get you an appointment as soon as possible to evaluate what caused it and how to fix the crown. If you need a new crown, or if there is decay in the tooth’s base, we can repair the tooth and create a new crown. If the adhesive is old and the crown can still be used, we will put new adhesive on. Contact us today if you have a crown fall out. Call us at 919-552-2431 or fill out the form below.