How can your Sunnyvale dentist help you if you've been affected by stress?
The most frequently occurring dental emergency we've seen these past few months is cracked teeth. In Sunnyvale and around the Bay Area, our patients are working from home, and it seems like they're working harder than ever. In our earlier post about bruxism, I talked a bit about side effects of and treatment for bruxism. I wanted to show you some photos from a patient we saw recently who had history of teeth grinding (bruxism).
This patient emailed us and scheduled an appointment for "pain on the left side", but he wasn't sure exactly where it was. He just knew that he had a constant toothache that seemingly came out of the blue, and he figured he needed to visit the dentist.
Teeth grinding can cause a dental emergency.
When we brought him in for his emergency appointment, we saw a tiny crack extending from his existing filling to the edge of his tooth. This same tooth was the culprit of his pain and discomfort.
Increased stress and bruxism during this time led to a cracked tooth. Bacteria traveled through the crack and into the nerve of the tooth. Our patient was able to feel immediate relief after visiting us by electing to start a root canal. A few appointments later, and he has a brand new crown to protect his root canal treated tooth. He is now able to chew and eat normally without any pain.
Check the photos below to see the extent of the cracked tooth. This is how stress can lead to a root canal. Who knew that a tiny crack could spread and cause such problems?
In the first photo, you can see a crack forming on the patient's tooth. In the second and third photos, we are able to see how the crack (dark brown line) spread underneath the filling to the pulp of the tooth. Bacteria was able to travel through the crack to the pulp, thus leading to a toothache.
Visit your Sunnyvale dentist to discuss ways to prevent and avoid dental emergencies.
As we talked about in my previous post, preventive dentistry can help save you money and help you avoid problems. If you have a nightguard that you don't wear, now's a good time to start wearing it regularly. If you have history of bruxism or if you're concerned about clenching/grinding your teeth, please schedule a visit to our office so that we can help you avoid being in the same situation as our emergency patient.