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What is a chipped tooth?

The part of a tooth that can be chipped is usually the enamel. Whilst tooth enamel is incredibly durable and strong, it is somewhat brittle and can still be damaged by long-term wear and tear or force. A “chipped tooth” usually results in a jagged tooth edge that can be rough on the tongue and aesthetically unpleasant.

Symptoms of a chipped tooth

  • Usually, a chipped tooth does not cause any symptoms but you may be able to tell the damage by running your tongue over your teeth. The area that is chipped will feel jagged and uneven.
  • It is also possible to feel pain when pressure is exerted on the tooth when chewing or biting. This is the case where the chip has exposed the dentine.

Speak to a dental professional today

Our dentists have all the experience, skill and technology required to diagnose and treat a chipped tooth. Arrange an appointment with our dental team at our central London dental clinic, situated on the prestigious Wimpole Street.

What is the most common cause of a chipped tooth?

A chipped tooth may happen as a pure accident on an otherwise healthy tooth when there is a strong and sudden force that causes the enamel to break. This could be the case when someone tried to bite on something very hard, like hard candy or ice, or an object.

However, these chips are more likely to happen on teeth that have suffered from wear or that are already restored. The factors that can lead to weaker teeth are:

  • Teeth grinding (Bruxism) places extraordinary pressure on teeth that accelerates wear and tear and can lead to weakened tooth enamel.
  • Excessive consumption of acidic food and drink such as juices, vinegar, coffee, alcohol, fizzy drinks etc.
  • Conditions such as acid reflux, heartburn or excessive vomiting can bring up stomach acid that will weaken the enamel.
  • Tooth decay, caused by poor oral hygiene, can weaken, and reduce tooth enamel.
  • Previously restored teeth will be more susceptible to accidents.
  • Natural aging and wear and tear, over time, can contribute to weakened tooth enamel.

How do you fix a chipped tooth?

  • There are multiple treatment options to correct a chipped tooth at Wimpole Street Dental Clinic, these include:


In some cases, it may be possible to adhesively bond a broken or chipped part of the tooth back onto your tooth. This is mostly the case when a larger part of the tooth is chipped of due to a trauma. It is helpful if the tooth fragment is kept moist and if you can see the dentist immediately.


A composite filling material can be adhesively bonded to the chipped tooth and shaped to restore the tooth to its natural form and colour. Bonded composite can look stunningly natural and it will feel quite comfortable.


A ceramic veneer could be considered in case the bonded composite for some reason was not successful or long-lasting.

Prof Christian Mehl

Written by: Prof Dr Christian Mehl

A certified implantologist and prosthodontics specialist with 20+ years in dentistry, I conduct clinical research, teach at University of Kiel, and contribute to implant system development. Recipient of the Camlog Research Award, I frequently publish and deliver global lectures.

Clinically reviewed by: Dr Raul Costa

When did we last update this page?

Our expert team continually update and research the latest news and techniques in dentistry, as such we regularly update our pages and have these clinically reviewed.

Current Version

July 21st 2023

  • Added “when did we last update this page” and author biography to the page.

Written by: Prof Dr Christian Mehl

Medically reviewed by: Dr Raul Costa

Previous Versions

October 2nd 2022

  • Page redesigned and updated to reflect change in address.

Written by: Prof Dr Christian Mehl

Medically reviewed by: Dr Raul Costa

30th August 2021

  • Original content created.

Written by: Prof Dr Christian Mehl

Medically reviewed by: Dr Raul Costa

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