If gapped teeth have you feeling insecure about your smile, treatment for gapped teeth may be right for you. Cosmetic dentistry treatments are highly effective at correcting dental flaws, including gaps between teeth, allowing you to smile with confidence. To find out which treatment for gapped teeth is right for you, schedule a consultation with our Memphis, TN team of dentists at Southern Dental Implant Center.
What Causes Gapped Teeth?
Gaps can form between the teeth for a number of reasons. Those with a large gap between the two upper, front teeth may have an oversized labial frenum. The labial frenum is the tissue that runs from inside the upper lip to the gums. This tissue usually stops before reaching the teeth, but sometimes it is large enough to run between the front teeth, resulting in a large gap.
Others may experience gaps between the teeth as a result of difference in tooth size compared to jaw size. When the teeth are undersized, gaps can form due to the teeth being unable to fill out the jaw.
In other cases, gaps can develop over time as a result of our habits, including thumb sucking and tongue thrust. Thumb sucking and pacifier use after the permanent teeth come in can cause problems with the alignment of the teeth, leading to gaps and other issues. Tongue thrust can also cause gaps to develop between the teeth. Tongue thrust is a disorder of the swallowing reflex; it causes the tongue to press into the front, upper teeth, rather than the roof of the mouth.
Even tooth loss can cause gaps to form between the teeth. Tooth loss causes gaps in the obvious areas where teeth are missing, and it can also cause the remaining teeth to shift, potentially leading to gaps.
Treatments for Gapped Teeth
Fortunately, there are many treatments available for closing gaps between teeth and improving the overall appearance of the smile. The type of treatment will depend on the extent and cause of gaps, and is best decided between you and your dentist. Some popular treatments for gapped teeth include:
- Dental Bonding: Dental bonding is a cosmetic dentistry treatment that can be used to reshape the teeth and close gaps. Dental bonding treatment uses a soft, tooth-colored resin, applied directly to the teeth, to change the size, shape, and overall appearance of the teeth for improved aesthetics.
- Porcelain Veneers: Porcelain veneers can be used to close gaps and hide other imperfections for a beautiful, flawless smile. Porcelain veneers are thin, tooth-shaped prosthetics that cover the front-facing surfaces of the teeth. Each veneer is crafted to the desired size, shape, and shade for a beautiful finish.
- Frenectomy: A frenectomy is a minor surgical procedure used to remove excess labial frenum tissue. Those with an oversized labial frenum may require a frenectomy before undergoing treatment for gapped teeth in order to achieve optimum results. However, younger patients may find a frenectomy is sufficient for gap closure.
- Traditional Orthodontics: Traditional orthodontic treatment is highly effective at closing gaps between the teeth, even in cases of severe alignment issues. Traditional orthodontics uses a bracket and wire system, which is gradually tightened, to reposition the teeth and create a beautifully aligned smile.
- Invisalign®: Invisalign® offers discreet orthodontic treatment, allowing patients to enjoy the benefits of a straight smile without the use of metal braces. Invisalign® achieves this through the use of a series of custom-made, clear dental trays. These trays gradually shift the teeth, resulting in gap-free, straight teeth by the end of treatment.
- Dental Implants: Replacing missing teeth can help prevent gaps caused by shifting teeth. Dental implants can be paired with different restorations, including dental crowns and dentures, to replace individual or multiple teeth.
Discover Your Treatment Options
You can enjoy the confidence of a gorgeous smile with treatment from our team at the Southern Dental Implant Center. To find out which treatments are right for you, we welcome you to schedule a consultation today.