Around 33% of Americans avoid smiling because they’re embarrassed about their tooth problems.
Perhaps you’re self-conscious about your teeth gap, otherwise known as a diastema, and are hoping to get it fixed. Luckily, there are dental procedures to fix this that are both simple and effective.
Not sure what they are? Don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place. Here are the top three, ranked in order.
What Causes Gap Teeth?
Before we discuss how to fix gap teeth, it’s important to understand how it happens. There are many reasons why we get gap teeth, for example, the size of your jawbone and the size of your teeth may not match.
Or you have missing teeth which causes a tooth to move to compensate, leaving a gap behind. Also, if your tongue pushes against your front teeth when you swallow then it can make them gradually separate.
Further, thumb sucking pushes teeth out of alignment or if a patient has gum disease then it could weaken the jawbone so teeth loosen and move.
Why Do You Need To Fix Gap Teeth?
Aside from confidence issues, patients with a gap in their front teeth may have problems with oral hygiene. This is because teeth gaps trap food debris so it’s harder to remove when you brush or floss. As a result, bacteria and plaque can build up which, left unchecked, leads to gingivitis, periodontitis, and even tooth decay.
Further, gaps between teeth can cause a misaligned bite so chewing becomes difficult and sometimes painful. And if you can’t chew food properly then you’ll end up swallowing large chunks which can cause digestive problems.
The Top 3 Ways To Fix Teeth Gaps
We’ve covered the importance of fixing gaps in your teeth so now we’ll dive into the practical solutions. These are ranked from the least effective to the most but it’s important to note it may vary from case to case.
Here are the three options.
3. Dental Bonding
Teeth gap fillings, otherwise known as dental bonding, is the quickest and cheapest way to fix the spacing between your teeth. During this procedure, your dentist shapes and applies resin to the sides of each tooth to fill the gap.
Then, the dentist uses a special light to harden the resin so it looks like a natural tooth. Dentists can do cosmetic bonding in a single visit and it’s possible to remove the resin if necessary. Although, when looked after, dental bonding lasts between five to seven years.
But it’s important to look after the resin as the material may stain and become discolored. Or, worse, the bonding may break and chip if it’s not looked after properly.
Because of this, you must take care of your dental bonds by avoiding food or drinks that stain like berries, tea, wine, and colored candies. Further, don’t smoke as it’ll turn the bond yellow and avoid hard foods, otherwise, the composite material will chip.
An effective way to fix the teeth gap is to get veneers. They’re made from ceramic or porcelain and are installed on the front of your teeth to hide the spacing. First, a thin layer of enamel is filed down and then the porcelain shell is applied.
Veneers are durable and don’t stain, making them a popular option. The shells are tooth-colored and designed to look more natural so no one will notice you have them. But it’s important to note that they’re permanent so you must be certain that this is the best treatment for you.
1. Braces and Invisalign
Although it’s not a quick fix, you should consider orthodontic treatment if you have a severe case of teeth spacing. Dentists may suggest this because when you close a large space between your teeth it will create smaller gaps in your mouth.
Braces and Invisalign restore your teeth so they’re in perfect position and function properly. The former uses permanent metal brackets while Invisalign uses a set of clear plastic trays that you only take out when you eat or brush.
Not only do braces or aligners fix teeth gaps but they also restore crooked, crowded, protruding teeth and fix your bite. Plus, there are options so you only wear braces for six months to correct the teeth gap. If you’re interested, read more now.
Or you could consider removable orthodontic appliances that look like retainers. These fix your tooth gap in six weeks and are often cheaper than braces or clear aligners.
You’ll notice they have springs that push your front teeth together on both arches and have a wire going across your teeth. It’s important to wear this appliance for 20 hours a day and remove it for eating or brushing.
You should also discuss the possibility of using tooth gap bands with your dentist. These look like rubber bands and they go around the two teeth on either side of the gap to force them together.
But it’s important to note, there are potential risks with this option. For example, if the gap band gets under your gums then it could cut into and hurt your tooth. As a result, you’ll need even more expensive dental work.
That’s How To Fix Teeth Gap
Now you know how to fix teeth gap.
These options are all effective but orthodontic treatment is the best as it eliminates spacing between your teeth while addressing other issues like overcrowding. Veneers are the second most effective thanks to their durability and look but dental bonding is useful for a short-term fix.
Either way, schedule an appointment with your dentist and they’ll recommend the best option for you. Good luck!
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