Say it with us: Teeth are not tools

Everyone, listen up and repeat after us – teeth are not tools. We absolutely cringe when we see people using their teeth to rip into bags, or to crack open a bottle. You know, it's only a cool party trick until someone cracks a tooth instead of that bottle. And trust us, there are absolute horror stories of this happening.

However, we also understand that we can easily give you this warning but many still won't listen unless we back it up. So today, we're going to do just that. Pay close attention everyone! This is why teeth, should never be considered tools. 

Teeth, not tools 

It's plain and simple, teeth are not as hard as many of the things you're subjecting them too. Really, they're only meant for chewing food, so once you start throwing metals and glass or whatever else in there, you're putting yourself at risk for serious chipping, if not a crack.

To get a little more technical, the enamel – the stuff along the edge of your teeth – is brittle and when you hit at the right angle (aka, the wrong angle) it can easily chip right off. You might be okay with your enamel being like this for a little bit, but when the edge is jagged it's at risk of cracking even further. However, if the chip is deep enough, you might end up experiencing extreme sensitivity to hot and cold beverages, sweets, or just the very air you breathe in. This means a nerve chamber has been exposed, and you're probably in for a world of hurt.

This chipped tooth could easily turn into a toothache. This chipped tooth could easily turn into a toothache.

What to do if your tooth is already cracked

Okay, so you didn't listen and you already chipped your tooth. That's okay, these things happen and there's no judgement here. You have a couple of options available to you. Truthfully, it's best if you can get to the dentist as soon as possible for a quick fix, but we understand if that isn't possible at the time of the crack. 

If you can get to the dentist immediately, you should.

If you're on the way to the dentist and need something to help soothe any ensuing pain, some find that clove oil works well, as it is an antibacterial with numbing properties, reports the Wall Street Journal. Be careful if you've lost your whole tooth, however. Dentists used to recommend that you put the tooth in milk to keep it from withering away, but now it's believed that you should keep the tooth under your tongue until you get into the chair. Obviously if your tooth is under your tongue this is an instance of you needing to get to the dentist ASAP.  

So like we said, if you can get to the dentist immediately, you should. Here at City Dentists, we have emergency dental services for when you need a speedy treatment. If it's a small chip, you want to get the tooth filed down so it can't snag on anything else. By the way, don't attempt to do this by yourself. The file you have is not the same tool that your dentist will use and you might only make it worse. However, if that nerve has been exposed, it's going to take a bit more work. 

At the end of the day, it's important to know where your enamel stands so you understand what's at risk when you chomp down into harder surfaces. A routine appointment at City Dentists will help you monitor this!