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Cracked Tooth Syndrome

Do you grind or clench your teeth? If so, you may be at an increased risk for Cracked Tooth Syndrome (CTS). CTS occurs when your tooth fractures at an incredibly small scale, often below the gum line. Because the cracks are so small, they are difficult to diagnose and virtually impossible to see, especially if below the gum line.

Cracked Tooth Syndrome can cause pain while chewing but without the constant ache of a cavity or abscess. Since CTS is difficult to diagnose, patients sometimes go a long time dealing with cracked tooth pain and ineffective treatment.

What Is Cracked Tooth Syndrome?

Sometimes when a tooth fractures it’s obvious. We can just look at your mouth and see serious damage. Other times there are cracks that are so small they’re barely visible, and that’s CTS. It can be caused by a lot different traumatic accidents but can also be, and is often, due to grinding your teeth!

Dental enamel is incredibly strong but it’s still just meant to handle a certain amount of force. Bad habits like grinding and clenching, using your teeth as tools, chewing your fingernails, and chewing on hard things like ice create too much force for them to handle! These forces don’t need to be repetitive to cause damage – just one bad bite can cause invisible damage to your teeth!

Cracked tooth syndrome involves incomplete fractures that are often at or below the gumline which can make them even harder to detect! There’s also quite a few painful symptoms that you’ll experience:

  • Sharp pain when biting or chewing that usually goes away when you stop
  • Pain when drinking sugary drinks
  • Pain when drinking cold drinks, but not hot
  • Sharp pain when you release a bite that lasts for just a second
  • Pain that isn’t persistent and only happens on use


Cracked tooth syndrome is definitely unpleasant, and you probably know if you’ve ever suffered from it! Unfortunately those symptoms aren’t unique to CTS: yet another reason it’s so hard to diagnose!

Diagnosing Cracked Tooth Syndrome

The symptoms of cracked tooth syndrome are similar to a whole host of other conditions that make it very hard to find! With the symptoms we mentioned above you could have sinusitis, temporomandibular joint disorder, chronic headaches, and other conditions. It’s also common for cracked tooth syndrome to present slightly differently than the indicated symptoms: it’s tricky!

At our Cincinnati dentist office we use several different methods to detect CTS. Bite tests, X-rays, and a special dye are all methods we use to detect the smallest of cracks in your teeth. With the extra training of our team we are able to identify cracked tooth syndrome and finally help you find relief from the constant pain and discomfort you’ve been living with!

When you come in to Anderson Dental Care, we’ll perform a series of tests to find where the pain is originating. Using bite tests, X­-rays, and dyes, we will determine if there is a cracked tooth and how to best treat it.

Treatment of Cracked Tooth Syndrome

Because diagnosis and symptoms of CTS is so difficult, treatment can go through several stages. The initial procedure won’t always completely alleviate pain, and we may recommend additional care

If you think you’re suffering from Cracked Tooth Syndrome, don’t wait! Call our office today at (513) 231-7755 or schedule an appointment using our online form. Any delay in treatment could only make the problem worse.