Chipped front tooth 4 years ago. The enamel is weak and the corner is about to break off. No pain. Options? (Photo)

This chip has grown over time. A dentist I saw recently said I would need a root canal and crown (like the other front tooth, but IT was a complete break) bcs my enamel is REAL bad. Im afraid every time I bite. The entire corner is abt to break off. Is a crown good enough? W/out the root canal? Is there an even a less expensive option? Should I get other opinions? Sorry the pic is not great. Thank you too anyone who takes time to give me their opinion!

Doctor Answers 4

Chipped tooth

Hi there,

It's not possible to evaluate whether the tooth needs a root canal or not based on the photograph. The number one question is how and why the tooth cracked to begin with. An xray and clinical exam can give you the best options for treatment. There are a number of ways to correct a cracked tooth-bonded white filling material, a veneer, a depends on the location and severity of the break. If you don't feel comfortable with the recommendation of the dentist you saw, I would suggest a second opinion. 

Best of luck!

Chipped Front Tooth and No Pain

Hi Juliet !  I would think you would need an x ray and a check on your bite first to see why the tooth cracked .  If there is no pain and no infection, there is no reason to have a root canal.  I would try crown placement and see if this does not make this tooth stable. If the crack is not large, I would suggest using a less invasive method such as bonding the tooth.  If the bonding breaks, then you need to go to a crown.
The bonding is the least expensive as well.

Vachik Danoukh, DMD
Van Nuys Dentist

Crown vs. Root canal and crown

The only reason to suggest a root canal is if the tooth has abscessed. If the tooth hasn't abscessed a simple crown is all that is needed. If you have concerns about the treatment suggested a second opinion is an option.

Chipped Tooth

I would advise you to go see your general dentist for repair of the fractured segment with a tooth colored restoration. 

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.