Despite all your efforts to maintain the highest level of dental hygiene, you may be horrified to see a gap developing between two teeth. Such gaps can feel larger than they actually are, especially if they are between your front teeth. Fortunately, a gap in your teeth can be fixed. In this article, we discuss why these gaps develop, as well as highlighting the available treatment options at Dental One Care in Sterling Heights, MI.
Common Causes of Gaps Between Teeth
Diastemas, or gaps in teeth, commonly occur between the front teeth but can also appear between any other two teeth in your mouth due to one or more of the following factors;
Mismatched jawbone and teeth sizes
Extra space can develop between teeth if the size of the jaw bone is too large or too small relative to the size of the teeth. Dr. Fardi Farhat, a dentist in Sterling Heights, MI, explains that this mismatch between the size of the teeth and the jaw bone can also cause one’s teeth to crowd.
Undersized or missing teeth
See a Sterling Heights dentist as soon as you lose a tooth or several teeth because this condition may cause gaps to develop between your remaining teeth. Experts at Dental One Care explain that when you lose a tooth, the adjacent teeth may move towards the gap left. As these teeth move, they create gaps between themselves and the teeth nearest to them. Gaps may also result from one or more teeth that are smaller than those nearest to them.
An overgrown labial frenum
The labial frenum is a piece of flesh that grows from the upper lip to the gums. If this tissue grows excessively, it can extend to the middle of your front teeth and prevent the natural progression of the process through which this gap is closed.
When you suck your thumb, constantly hold a pencil between your teeth, or engage in any other bad oral habit, you may develop a gap between your front teeth. Dr. Fardi Farhat cautions parents to wing-off their child from pacifiers once necessary.
An abnormal swallowing reflex
Dentists in Sterling Heights explain that under normal circumstances, the tongue automatically presses against the roof of the mouth while you swallow. However, some people’s swallowing reflex can cause gaps to form between the front teeth affected each time an individual swallows.
Gum or periodontal disease can progress to a point at which gum recession starts taking place. Bone loss can also occur when gum disease is left untreated. When that happens, teeth can become loose and move, causing gaps.
Treatment Options for Gapped Teeth
One of the easiest, most economical, and fastest ways to treat gapped teeth is by dental bonding. In this simple procedure, tooth-colored material is placed on the tooth before using a special light to harden or cure the material. The process of curing the resin makes it form a strong bond with the tooth, thereby closing the gap.
Bonding has several other benefits, such as being reversible and requiring just one visit. Dr. Fardi Farhat cautions that the bonding resin used can develop chips and cracks easily, so great care must be taken to preserve these restorations.
Use of Dental Veneers
Your dentist in Sterling Heights, MI, can also recommend dental veneers to close the gaps between your teeth. This process is relatively invasive since it requires some enamel to be removed from the front surface of your teeth in order to make room for the thin porcelain (or other material) veneer that will be cemented onto the teeth.
Veneers also mask other imperfections that you may have on your teeth, such as minor chips and cracks. Dr. Farhat, Sterling Heights’ dentist, also adds that veneers are more durable than bonding since they are made from stronger materials.
However, the use of dental veneers is an irreversible process because the teeth are weakened by the removal of a thin layer of enamel. The veneers protect the teeth after the removal of enamel and sustain the functionality of the teeth.
Another way to fix gaps, especially severe gaps, involves undergoing orthodontic treatment. For example, you may wear traditional braces or newer orthodontic devices like Invisalign to move all your teeth so that all the gaps are closed at once.
The only downside that Dr. Farhat points out regarding this form of treatment is that the treatment process takes longer than the time required to fix the problem compared to using another method, such as veneers or bonding.
Don’t let the gaps in your teeth affect the beauty and functionality of your smile. Schedule an appointment at Dental One Care in Sterling Heights, MI, and the experienced professionals at the office will recommend the most cost-effective treatment option based on your unique circum