If you have gaps between some of your teeth, you’re not alone! Diastemata – the technical term for spaces between adjacent teeth – are very common. The good news is, there are several treatment options available if you’re looking to correct these spaces.
Is it necessary to fix spaces between my teeth?
First, you might be wondering whether it’s actually necessary to correct these gaps. There are plenty of people who famously have gaps in their teeth. However, there are several reasons, apart from esthetic preference, why you may want to consider treatment.
- Difficulty Chewing – When there are excessive gaps between adjacent teeth, food tends to slip into these spaces. Because of this, food is much more likely to be trapped for long periods of time, risking infections, gum problems and cavities.
- Speech Problems – You’ve probably noticed that gaps in your teeth (particularly your two front teeth) can cause a change in your voice. This is because air passes between these gaps, resulting in “whistling sounds.” If you’re doing a lot of public speaking, this might be an unwelcome experience!
- Spitting – Another problem with having a diastema is the occasional spitting which occurs during speech. The reason behind this is that saliva flows through these gaps, causing you to spit whenever you speak.
- It May Get Worse – Probably the worst thing about having a diastema is that, over time, it may get worse. Your teeth will shift as you get older, and having spaces between teeth makes them much more likely to move in unpredictable ways, and faster.
How can I get rid of the gap in my teeth?
The good news is that these gaps can be easily corrected! There are two main corrective options available: orthodontic or cosmetic treatment.
Orthodontic Treatment – Braces or Invisalign
This is the best, and most effective corrective option for a diastema. Braces and Invisalign will gradually close the gaps between adjacent teeth. In fact, this is probably the orthodontic issue that Invisalign is most effective at correcting. (If you’re considering orthodontic treatment and are trying to decide between the two, take a look at our comparison of braces and Invisalign.)
However, orthodontic treatment takes at least six months, so if you’re looking for a quicker solution, there are also cosmetic options available.
Cosmetic Treatment Options
Cosmetic treatment involves masking the gaps between teeth with tooth colored fillings, veneers, or crowns.
- Bonding – For this procedure, a tooth-colored filling material is applied to your teeth, widening them so that the gap is closed. This can be done in a single visit, and the results are immediate.
- Veneers – Another cosmetic option is to attach veneers – very thin shells made of porcelain – over the front surfaces of your teeth in such a way that the gaps are filled. Depending on the specifics of your smile, bonding or veneers may be the preferred option. Either way, the results are immediate.
- Crowns – In cases where veneers or bonding are not suitable, we may recommend attaching crowns over the front teeth to correct the gaps.
If you have a diastema, and are considering treatment, reach out and set up an appointment. We’ll be able to tell you which options are most suitable for your situation, and what you can expect in terms of time and cost.