Five Ideas for Dealing With or Hiding a Dead Tooth

A dead tooth happens when the nerve inside a tooth has been damaged or decayed, and as a result, the tooth appears gray. Wondering how to hide or fix your discoloured dead tooth? Here are some options:

1. Schedule a root canal

In some cases, dentists can save dead teeth with a root canal. However, this typically only works soon after the tooth has died. Talk with your dentist to see if it would work in your situation.

2. Use a cap to hide the tooth

If it's too late for a root canal, a cosmetic dentist may be able to help you hide the dead tooth with a cap. A cap is an fake enamel cover that a dentist installs permanently over a tooth. Dentists use caps on teeth with cavities as well as other types of damage. Crowns can also work in this situation.

3. Talk with a cosmetic dentist about a bridge

If you want the dead tooth removed or if your dentist advises extraction, a bridge is an option to consider. A bridge is essentially a fake tooth connected to two crowns. The crowns are fitted over the teeth on either side of where your dead tooth used to be. Then, the fake tooth sits in the middle. This is a permanent solution to a missing tooth, and it isn't apparent to viewers that you have a fake tooth.

4. Don't bleach surrounding teeth

If you aren't ready to use a crown or a bridge to address your dead tooth, you may want to try to hide it. If possible, consider not bleaching the teeth surrounding the dead tooth. Most teeth are slightly off-white, but some people like to bleach them to make them sparkly and free of stains. Unfortunately, super white teeth may highlight the grayness of your dead tooth, so you may want to leave your teeth alone until you have a chance to remove or cap the dead tooth.

5. Look at snap-on smiles

Snap-on smiles are fake smiles. These are available online, and like a mouthguard for sport, these mouthpieces soften up in warm water. Then, you slip them into your mouth and let them mold to the shape. Once installed, they create the appearance of a perfectly straight and white smile. You can buy snap-on smiles from a range of manufacturers and for the upper or lower teeth or both. These are not a permanent solution, but they can work as a stop gap solution if you need to take pictures for a wedding or attend a special event.

For more information, contact offices like TLC Dental.