Cracked Tooth Symptoms, Causes, Types and Complications

Dr. Amrendra Kumar

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Amrendra Kumar


6 min read


Worried about your cracked tooth? Whether you have a chipped tooth or broken teeth, visit a dentist and fix it immediately before the condition worsens and your tooth pain becomes unbearable.

Key Takeaways

  • Cracked tooth can appear when you bite on hard foods
  • The main cause of a chipped tooth could be a dental injury
  • Timely broken teeth treatment can protect your teeth and gums

Imagine that you’re biting down on something really hard and cracking your teeth. Sounds scary, right? Getting a cracked tooth does happen, and being careful about what you do next is important. While at times you may be able to see your cracked tooth symptoms, there can be situations wherein your cracked tooth remains invisible.

The crack may happen on any side of your tooth. In some cases, you may be able to even hear the sound of your tooth cracking, and sometimes it is only visible later. It is also possible for your cracked tooth to become highly sensitive. These sensitive teeth may refrain you from eating really cold or hot foods. This is one of the most obvious indications of a cracked tooth. 

While you may feel pain in your cracked tooth at times, this pain may not be constant. In case the crack on your teeth is minute, it can be difficult for the dentist to locate it. But if the sensitivity of your teeth increases, it is better to visit a dentist to check if you’ve got a cracked tooth.

There are more chances for you to get a cracked tooth as you age or if you grind your teeth during your sleep. If the problem of your cracked tooth is not resolved on time, it can increase your tooth sensitivity and result in gum infections such as periodontitis.

While small cracks on your tooth may not be harmful, they can result in broken teeth during other times. A cracked tooth may appear for anyone though it is more commonly seen in seniors and kids. As per a study, those between 45 and 54 years are at higher risk of getting a cracked tooth [1].

Did you know that with scientific advancements in broken teeth treatment, you can fix your broken teeth in less than 60 minutes? While this spells good news for getting treated, being aware of the problem and taking the right steps is important. As per a dental survey, there seems to be an increase in the number of people with cracked teeth after the pandemic. This clearly emphasizes how COVID-19 has taken a toll on our mental and overall well-being. The report further states that teeth grinding due to stress is the most common reason for getting a cracked tooth.

To know more about the types, causes, and symptoms of a cracked tooth, read on.

Additional read: Oral cancer symptoms and warning signsCracked Tooth complications

Cracked tooth Types

There are different ways for a cracked tooth to occur. Remember, any cracked tooth left unattended for a long period can result in broken teeth. You may know that your tooth has an outer covering called the enamel. In the craze line type of cracked tooth, you may see cracks in the enamel. This type of cracked tooth is harmless and does not cause any pain.

When the chewing surface of your tooth breaks, this type of cracked tooth is called a fractured cusp. You may observe this kind of cracked tooth in areas near your dental fillings. In some cases, your cracked tooth breaks into two parts. Known as a split tooth, this cracked tooth may require you to undergo a root canal procedure.

One part of your broken teeth will be treated by placing a crown on it. If there is any damage beneath the gum line, especially on the jawbone, this type of cracked tooth is called oblique root crack. Extracting your affected tooth is the best remedy in such cases.

In case the cracks do not damage your gum line but are causing a lot of pain, such a type of cracked tooth is known as oblique subgingival crack. There may be cracks heading from your gum line in the upward direction. Such a cracked tooth is called a vertical root fracture. Though its symptoms may be unnoticeable, you may have to go for a tooth extraction.

cracked tooth symptoms

Cracked Tooth Causes

There are various reasons for your teeth to crack. A few causes for cracked teeth have been mentioned below. 

  • If you are above the age of 50 years 
  • If you bite into hard food items such as candies or nuts 
  • If you constantly have the habit of grinding your teeth 
  • If you eat something hot and immediately chew something cold 
  • If you meet with an accident or any other injury related to sports 

Additional read: 6 Vital Benefits of Quitting Sugar 

Cracked Tooth Symptoms

Here are some of the cracked tooth symptoms that you should be aware of. 

  • Excessive swelling is seen around your gum line, covering the cracked tooth 
  • Severe pain that may or may not be constant 
  • The inability of your cracked tooth to bear extreme cold or hot temperature 
  • Severe pain when you try chewing your food 

Cracked Tooth Treatment 

If you neglect your cracked tooth, it can break your teeth. This emphasizes why broken teeth treatment is vital. After your dentist diagnoses the area of the crack and its severity, a broken teeth treatment plan is devised. 

In case of any dental injury, you may get a chipped tooth. You can opt for a broken teeth treatment to repair your chipped tooth. Be it the chipped front tooth or any other grinding tooth; your dentist may fix a crown to repair the chipped tooth. The broken part of your chipped front tooth can also be fixed with the help of a tooth-colored filling. Whether it is the chipped front tooth or any other chipped tooth, timely medical intervention can prevent it from worsening further.

By fixing a crown, the entire cracked tooth can be covered. In some cases, the crack is repaired using plastic resin by binding it onto the cracked tooth. In some broken teeth treatment methods, the broken part may be glued back to the tooth. When cracked tooth symptoms are so severe that they affect your gum line, a root canal is the preferred option. If your cracked tooth causes any oral infections, you may have to take antibiotics.

Now that you are aware of the cracked tooth causes and why broken teeth treatment is important, keep a close watch on cracked tooth symptoms. While it is not possible to treat a cracked tooth at home, take the necessary steps to prevent cracks on your teeth. Regular dental visits, use of a mouth guard if you are prone to grinding your teeth, and being careful to avoid any injury to your mouth are some ways in which you can avoid a cracked tooth.

If you observe any cracked tooth symptoms, contact top dentists on Bajaj Finserv Health. Book an online consultation within minutes either by using the app or the website. Choose a dentist close to your area and start your broken teeth treatment without any delay. This way, you can bid goodbye to cracked tooth problems!

Published on 6 Jul 2022Last updated on 5 Apr 2023

Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.

Dr. Amrendra Kumar

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Amrendra Kumar

, BDS , MDS - Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery 3



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