The official name for a gap in the teeth is Diastema, and there are several methods for getting rid of it.
Most of the time the gap is between the two front teeth, and it can range from a very small gap to a very wide and noticeable one.
The main ways to minimize a gap between the two front teeth are:
- Cosmetic Dentistry
- Dental Braces Or Retainers
- Orthodontic Teeth Bands
Cosmetic Dentistry For Gaps In Teeth
If you go down the cosmetic dental route to have a gap in the teeth fixed you will have a choice of treatments.
Your options would be:
- Cosmetic Dental Bonding
- Porcelain Veneers
- Dental Crowns
- Permanent Implants
These options have varying costs involved, which may not be covered by any dental insurance plan you have. This is because cosmetic dentistry is often excluded, due to the fact it is not necessarily classed as essential.
A smile or teeth makeover may make you feel better, but many dental care plan providers consider it unecessary.
Among the cheapest cosmetic procedures is composite resin bonding, with permanent dental implants holding a higher price tag.
Orthodontic Braces Or Retainers For Tooth Gaps
Dental braces have been used for many years to straighten teeth, but they have also been a typical solution to getting rid of gaps in your teeth too.
Many young people have avoided them because wearing the traditional metal braces led to a great deal of teasing or even bullying from others.
However, you now have a range of modern teeth braces available including invisible braces.
There is now a choice of retainers available, and you can choose from a removable retainer or a clear retainer which has been custom made to fit your teeth.
Braces and retainers will need to be long term, as the bone needs to settle around the new tooth position.
Even when the tooth gap closes it may return if the bone hasn’t stabilized.
Orthodontic Teeth Bands
One of the cheapest solutions to fixing a gap in your two front teeth is with the use of elastic teeth bands.
You can buy packs of these elastic bands for less than $10, and that’s for 100 bands!
You use the bands to pull the two teeth together and after a period of time the teeth gradually come closer, thereby closing the gap.
Although many people report excellent results from this cheap solution to tooth gaps, other people complain that the gap returns as soon as they stop using the bands.
Is There A Permanent Solution To A Tooth Gap?
Most solutions will take care of the problem for a period of time. Sometimes the solution could last for ten years before it needs to be addresses again.
There is one solution that can fix the problem for good. A permanent retainer can be bonded to the teeth, and this will be on the back of the teeth so it won’t be visible.
Before deciding on the best option for your dentist will probably want to determine several things such as:
- Will your tooth roots allow for enough movement to the new teeth position?
- Is there some physical condition or bad habit which has caused the gap?
- Are your teeth and gums in a healthy condition?
What Causes A Gap In the Teeth?
There are many reasons why people develop a gap in their front teeth.
Sometimes with children, it’s cause by sucking their thumb a lot. Other times, it’s just that they are losing some of their baby teeth, so their teeth are different in size.
Some people have very small teeth in comparison to the size of their jawbone. Therefore the teeth do not fill up the jawbone as they should.
If the upper lateral incisors which sit either side of the two front teeth are missing, then the central incisors (front teeth) can spread out leaving a gap.
When someone suffers from periodontal disease and bone loss, teeth can more easily move around and a gap can appear.
A physical deformity of the labial frenum can mean that is prevents the two front teeth from lying close together.
There is an old wives tale, which states if you push the teeth together every day a gap in the teeth will disappear. Many people have tried it with mixed results.
Although this might seem like the ideal solution, great care should be taken. If you damage the root of the tooth by forcing it too far, you could end up with a slack tooth.
The end result could be that you need to have the tooth extracted, and then you will be faced with a new problem; how to replace a missing tooth.