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Dental emergencies in San Jose can happen for several reasons, but many patients are surprised to find that emergencies can even happen while chewing ice. When patients chew ice, they risk dental emergencies like cracked or chipped teeth as well as gum lacerations. If ice chewing is a difficult habit to break, speak with a dentist right away on how to avoid the following dental emergencies:

Cracked Teeth

Cracked teeth are one of the most common dental emergencies that can occur when chewing ice. Chewing on ice can contribute the degradation of tooth enamel, making the entire tooth structure more vulnerable to all kinds of damage. Just as chewing on hard candies or foreign objects can lead to cracked teeth, so too can chewing on ice. When a tooth cracks, it can be painful and require immediate emergency dental services. To save a cracked tooth, an emergency dentist must see to it right away. Dental crowns are often used to correct cracked teeth, but dental bonding, root canal procedures, and extractions may be required.

Chipped Teeth

Chewing on ice can also lead to chipped teeth. Chipped teeth can result in dental issues like a cracked tooth, tooth pain, or difficulty chewing. Depending on the type of chip in the tooth—such as a broken cusp, or tooth point—the emergency dentist may suggest dental bonding or porcelain veneers to correct the issue. Dental bonding uses a tooth-colored composite, similar to a composite filling, to fill in small cracks and chips. Veneers are used to cover defects on the front teeth, such as a noticeable chip or discolored tooth.

Sensitive Teeth

When patients consistently chew on ice, they are slowly wearing down the enamel, which is the outer, protective layer of the tooth. As the enamel wears down, the tooth becomes more vulnerable to tooth decay and tooth sensitivity. When a tooth becomes overly sensitive or decayed, the patient may experience sharp or throbbing pain, which can signal other dental emergencies like infected root canals.