I got several porcelain crowns across my front teeth decades ago. One of them has always had a small horizontal line near the bottom, but it wasn’t noticeable. However, lately, it has become more visible, and I can feel the crack with my tongue. I’m terrified I’ll be out in public one day and it will just break entirely. What can I do? Is this something I could see an emergency dentist for?
River, from Hackensack, New Jersey
The line you’re describing sounds like a craze line. The horizontal lines occur naturally in both teeth and porcelain, and are nothing to worry about. What is concerning is that you can not only see this line more than before, but you can also feel it with your tongue. This could mean that your crown has moved or shifted.
It’s understandable to be concerned, but this does not constitute an emergency. You should, however, schedule an appointment with a cosmetic dentist soon, as your crown may shift again or even break entirely in the future.
However, replacing one crown is difficult. Matching the color to the rest of the crowns and your remaining natural teeth is a challenge for even the most masterful of cosmetic dentists. However, it is possible. If there is nothing wrong with your other crowns, there is no reason to remove them. If they are around 15-20 years old, your cosmetic dentist may recommend replacing all the crowns due to their age. However, if you have taken good care of the crowns all this time, they may not need to be replaced. Listen to your dentist and make a decision with their help.
This blog post is brought to you by Colorado Springs emergency dentist, Dr. Joseph Rota, of Rota Advanced Dental Care.