After a lot of tooth structure has been lost, your choices are limited. You could choose to:

A crown Major tooth structure lost A crown is an excellent way to restore a damaged tooth. It covers your tooth above the gum line, adding strength and restoring your tooth's function.

If you delay treatment, whether tooth structure was lost due to cavities or breakage, the situation is just going to get worse. Untreated cavities will grow slowly in the hard enamel, then more quickly through the softer dentin layer. If decay reaches the pulp chamber, you'll need root canal treatment to save the tooth. On the other hand, if tooth structure was lost due to breakage and the tooth breaks more, it's going to be harder to fix, and we may have no choice but to extract it.

An extraction is only a short-term solution. Teeth need each other for support, and when one or more teeth are lost, teeth begin to shift position, causing a chain reaction of other dental problems. Changes in your bite can lead to cavities, periodontal disease, and maybe even more tooth loss.

A filling may be an alternative, but fillings don't add strength to the tooth. They simply fill in the damaged part of the tooth lost to decay. For a filling to function correctly, there has to be enough tooth structure to hold it in place and keep the tooth from breaking when you chew.