If your tooth is cracked you may be referred to an endodontic specialist. We have several technologies in our office that help us diagnosis and evaluate cracked teeth. The cone beam CT allows us to diagnose untreatable root fractures prior to treatment. Our microscope allows us to see the extent of the crack during treatment. The extent of the crack is important in deciding the prognosis of the tooth.
Cracks in teeth can occur around fillings or even on teeth that have not had fillings due to heavy biting forces/grinding, trauma, or chewing ice or hard foods/candies. If the crack is in the portion of the tooth above the bone the tooth is fixable with a root canal and a crown. Published in the Journal of Endodontics, April 2018 edition; Krell and Caplan showed that there is a 82% success rate in treated cracked teeth after 1 year.
A crack in a tooth is like a crack in a windshield and could propagate. The tooth is more guarded than a tooth that does not have a crack in it. One of the most important steps of the treatment of the cracked tooth, and achieving the 82% success rate, is getting a crown on the tooth ASAP after the root canal procedure is finished. The crown is what protects the tooth from biting forces that could cause the crack to get worse.
Fracture that can not be fixed found on CBCT