The Women's Journal

At Any Moment Your Cracked Or Chipped Tooth Could Become A Painful, Expensive Emergency!

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pip del jas17 Dr. Anna GiacaloneBy Anna Giacalone, D.M.D.

Cracked teeth are often silent. They do not cause pain until the tooth splits down through the nerve into the bone. At that point you won’t be able to ignore the problem.  It is a painful emergency. If you are lucky, the tooth can be saved with a root canal and crown (cap). Maybe a few other procedures will be needed to surgically expose enough healthy tooth to permit a crown to be placed, a procedure known as crown lengthening.  Many times, a fracture goes right up the root into the bone and the tooth must be taken out. Now to replace that tooth you will be looking at some costly options. Not replacing the tooth often leads to a domino effect. Remaining teeth shift and even greater forces are placed on the surviving teeth. More teeth will likely break down the road.

You know that bad things often happen at the worst possible time.

  • Like the woman who saved for five years to afford a trip to Hawaii, then spent her dream vacation at a clinic in Maui having dental work and gum surgery.
  • Or the executive who had to conduct an important business seminar with a tooth that had shattered to the bone.
  • Or the mother of the bride who split off a front tooth at the gum line the morning of her daughter’s wedding.

Have a thorough dental exam ASAP to reveal vulnerable teeth and take action. You may not be aware that you have weak teeth, are placing excessive forces on your teeth, or that there are “silent” cracks in your teeth as you read this!

You see, cracks usually don’t happen because of one incident or accident, but more often, the crack occurs due to forces being placed upon the teeth over a long period of time. Weak teeth, those with large fillings or cavities, are more vulnerable as are teeth which are not aligned ideally. Teeth in an ideal biting relationship share the forces of biting with all of the other teeth in the mouth. In addition, nature creates a “shock absorbing system” within the ligament which holds the tooth to the bone. This system acts similarly to the shocks on a car which absorb the impact of road bumps etc. The ligament system of teeth is designed to work best in a vertical fashion. When teeth are leaning due to crowding or tipping into spaces, the ligament system does not function properly. Stresses on the teeth occur. The more impact a tooth takes when chewing, clenching or grinding, and the weaker the tooth, the more likely a fracture will occur.  According to a leading researcher, forces upon teeth through habits such as clenching and grinding can exceed 500 lbs. per square inch!

A new technology helps us find problems that could not be found previously, a fiber optic light with a wavelength designed to penetrate tissues. It is painless and safe. It works by employing the law of physics that states, “A beam of light will continue to penetrate through a translucent or transparent substance until it meets a space, after which the light beam is reflected.” When there is a crack in a tooth, light will NOT penetrate through the crack. This allows us to determine the presence of a genuine crack, and most importantly, the depth of the crack, which will never show on x-rays.

The deeper the crack is, the weaker the tooth is, and the FASTER the crack continues to get deeper.  And of course, the same forces that caused the crack are still going on, causing the crack to get deeper and deeper. The fact that your cracked tooth does not hurt at this moment is no guarantee that soon you would wish you had made the phone call for an exam.

If you have not seen a dentist in a while, let us help you. No one in my practice will make you feel guilty that you have not been seen recently. If you are afraid it is going to hurt, know that we help many frightened patients. With today’s techniques and technology, dental work simply does not have to hurt! We provide gentle and compassionate dental care. If a busy schedule has been your obstacle, know that we offer a variety of hours and respect your valuable time by staying on schedule.

Call for an appointment today! 610-558-1760 

anna cracked tooth jas17


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Call to schedule with Dr. Giacalone at 610-558-1760


Anna C. Giacalone, DMD, MAGD 

Master of the Academy of General Dentistry


DMD University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine

Certificate and Internship : Comprehensive Orthodontic Institute

Certificate: Dawson Academy of Advanced Study

Numerous  Awards and Commendations including Mastership in the Academy of General Dentistry, The Pennsylvania Dental Association Award for Excellence, Top Cosmetic Dentist Main Line Today, America’s Top Dentists, to name a few.

To learn more visit her web site: