A gap between your teeth can be considered a characteristic of your personality and something you love about your smile. However, if that little detail bothers you about the appearance of your teeth, or if it makes you feel self-conscious, a little cosmetic dentistry can go a long way to restore your confidence in your smile.
What is a Diastema?
Someone who has a noticeable gap between two teeth suffers from a diastema. While this trait appears most often between the two upper front teeth, a diastema can be between any two teeth, sometimes even many teeth at once, which creates teeth that look spaced out.
Frequent Causes of Gapped Teeth
Diastema can occur at many ages and for several reasons. Some of the most common causes of gapped teeth include the following:
If there is a discrepancy between the size of certain teeth and the size of the jaw bone where the dental arches are located, it can cause gaps to form. Additionally, if the teeth are too small for the arches due to genetics, this can cause spaces between the teeth. In trade, if teeth are too big for the jaw, this is when teeth become crowded and overlap.
The piece of tissue that extends from the inside of your upper lip to the gum, just above your two front upper teeth, is called a labial frenum. In some situations, the labial frenum continues to grow and passes between the two front teeth, blocking the natural closing of the space.
Thumb sucking habits, especially in children when teeth are coming in and constantly being moved around in the mouth, can easily cause a gap between teeth. Thumb sucking pushes the front teeth forward and causes other teeth to become misaligned.
Gaps can develop from an incorrect swallowing reflex which causes a tendency to thrust the tongue outward against the front teeth upon swallowing. Over time, this habit creates sufficient pressure on teeth and creates a gap from pushing the teeth forward.
Gum disease results in the loss of the bone that supports the teeth. If someone has lost a significant amount of bone, the teeth can start to move and shift. This movement can result in gaps between the front teeth.
Don’t Be Alarmed Over Gaps In Baby Teeth
It’s perfectly normal and even considered a good thing if your child has gaps between their baby teeth. As baby teeth start to fall out, most of these spaces close on their own, and those gaps can help leave a little extra room for the larger adult teeth to come in without overcrowding.
Treatment Options for Spaces Between Teeth in Teens and Adults
Dental Bonding – Bonding is one of the most affordable and quickest cosmetic dentistry treatments. Tooth-colored composite is shaped, applied, and hardened chair-side, all within the same day for this treatment. You won’t have to spend any time wearing temporaries or waiting for restorations to be returned from a lab. Bonding can quickly fill in gaps and resize or reshape teeth to improve the overall symmetry of your smile.
Veneers – Veneers can correct many different imperfections and lead to a smile that looks like your own. The porcelain material blends incredibly well with tooth enamel, so your veneers become a fully integrated part of your smile. If your front teeth are crooked, they can be repaired and paired with veneers to make your smile appear straighter, brighter, and more symmetrical to your face.
Consisting of clear plastic trays called aligners, Invisalign fits over the teeth and sits snugly in place, allowing your smile to show even during orthodontic treatment. By switching to new trays on a predetermined schedule, new aligners will gradually shift the teeth. By the end of the treatment (which is an average of 12 months), your teeth will be straight, and any previous gaps will be closed.
Are You Ready To Close The Gap?
If you need help in determining which treatment option can help you correct any gaps between your teeth, we’re here to help! Schedule a consultation with Hinsdale Dentistry today and take one giant step towards being more confident than ever in your smile.