You are happily munching on your favorite snack when you notice your dental crown is loose. This situation is enough to send you into a panic, as it signals a problem with your crown or implant.
With proper care, a dental crown can provide you with years of aesthetic appeal and functionality. However, after a while, you may notice the tell-tale wobble of a loose crown. You may also notice that food is getting stuck where the gum line meets the crown, or the tooth suddenly becomes very sensitive to hot or cold food. This is a sign that your crown is loose and in need of a tune-up.
Some of the reasons why your dental crown becomes loose include:
It is so old that it’s breaking down
You constantly clench or grind your teeth
Tooth decay due to lack of proper oral hygiene
Breakage of the crown due to trauma
The crown was nudged loose while the cement was setting
You consume lots of sticky foods
A loose crown can qualify as a dental emergency, especially if you experience severe pain. So what should you do when your crown is loose?
1. Book an appointment with your dentist
This should be your very first course of action. Call your dentist and inform him/her that the crown is loose. Book an appointment so that he/she can examine your teeth to determine the reason the crown is loose, as well as the extent of the damage.
2. Do not disturb the loose crown
If the crown is loose but it has not fallen out, do not wiggle it or touch it. When chewing food, use the side of the mouth that does not have the dental crown. Aggravating the loose crown could damage the abutment inside, which will only make things worse.
3. Temporary dental cement
If you cannot see your dentist for a few days and the tooth is very sensitive without the crown, you can call the dentist’s office to ask whether you can use temporary dental cement. This cement is a temporary solution, but it can hold the crown in place for some time while you wait to see the dentist. Securing the crown with temporary cement can protect your dentin from abrasion and decay. It can also reduce sensitivity to cold or hot foods.
If the dental crown is broken into pieces and your tooth is too sensitive, you can insulate the area with sugar-free chewing gum or a little dental cement. However, this solution will only help to ease the discomfort for a few hours as you wait to see your dentist.
A loose crown can be very unsettling, but it is also a very common problem. Fortunately, if the crown is in good shape, your dentist can easily cement it back in place. The sooner you call your dentist, the better. This is because the dentin underneath the crown is very vulnerable to damage and decay. The longer you wait, the more likely the dentin will change its shape and the dental crown will not fit anymore. Dealing with a loose crown? Contact us today and have it taken care of immediately.
Call (301) 804-9120 to schedule an appointment with James J. Stevens DDS in our Chevy Chase dental office.
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