If you have a gap in your teeth, you may be wondering if your orthodontist can help close it. Now, it’s true that many people celebrate the gap in teeth today. In fact, everyone from runway models to Good Morning America anchor Michael Strahan proudly rock their gaps.
A dental gap is also very common, especially in between your front teeth. Many factors can contribute to this gap, including small teeth, small gums, or even tissue that grows between your teeth. Called the frenum, the American Association of Orthodontists explains that this tissue attachment, located between your lip and tongue or your lip and jaw, can cause spacing between the front teeth if it’s too short or tight. If this is the cause of your tooth gap, a procedure to cut the frenulum may be recommended. Otherwise, you can explore less invasive treatments.
If you’re not in love with your current smile, you have several non-surgical options for closing the gap in your teeth. From braces to veneers, we’ll walk you through your choices today. That way, you can make an educated decision before committing to a treatment plan.
Excessive Spacing: Widely Spaced Teeth Occur When You Have Extra Space Within Your Jaw Due To Small-Sized Teeth, Abnormal Growth of the Jawbones, Genetics, Missing Teeth, and/or Tongue Protrusion
Options for Closing Gap in Teeth
The method you choose to close the gap in your teeth will depend on your budget, desired treatment time, and the severity of your tooth gap. The most common options include:
- Composite veneers
- Porcelain veneers
- Direct bonding
Let’s take a closer look at each approach, to help you decide if you should get braces or veneers to close the gap in your teeth.
If the gap between your teeth is large, braces or Invisalign are your best choice. Plus, as a bonus, this option can correct other orthodontic issues, such as misalignments or a crossbite, while closing that gap in teeth. Keep in mind that braces will only be effective if your gapped teeth are appropriately sized. The total treatment time could be anywhere between 3 months and a year, if not longer, so braces won’t offer a quick fix for a tooth gap. You may also explore other treatment options if you don’t like the color or shape of your teeth, since braces won’t correct those issues.
Some people may prefer a faster, less involved option for closing gapped teeth. And veneers (layers of material placed over your tooth), are one way to achieve quicker results. You don’t need to see an orthodontist if you choose veneers to fix a tooth gap. Instead, your dentist will measure your natural teeth. Then, they will prepare veneers that are slightly wider than the teeth on each side of your gap. Once applied, it will appear as if your dental gap has closed.
Within this treatment option, you’ll have to choose the type of material you prefer. Options include:
These are veneers made from tooth colored resin, like the kind used for tooth bonding. Composite veneers are a good choice if you have a small gap in teeth, and if your teeth are a bit discolored or misshapen. Your dentist builds these veneers while you are in the office, making it an effective, affordable option for the right candidates.
Porcelain veneers are made from medical grade ceramics that closely match your tooth’s natural enamel. These veneers are a better choice if you have a wide tooth gap, because they can better modify the appearance of your teeth. They are also stronger than composite veneers, which means porcelain veneers may be your best choice if the affected teeth take a lot of pressure when you bite. Just remember that these veneers cost more than composite ones.
Not ready for veneers or braces? You may explore dental bonding, a treatment which applies colored resin directly to your teeth to close the gap. After the application, your dentist will use a special light to harden the material. This treatment is best if your tooth color and shape is where you want it to be. It’s quick and effective, but may not be as strong a solution as other options.
What’s the Best Treatment for Dental Gaps?
There are several effective treatments to close gapped teeth. If you have additional orthodontic issues, braces or Invisalign will likely be your best choice. If your teeth are straight and in otherwise good condition, you may choose composite veneers or dental bonding. Need a little boost in shape and color while you close that gap? Try porcelain veneers.
Just remember: everybody’s smile is different. So, if you’re worrying about a gap in your teeth, go see your orthodontist. Together, you can choose the treatment that’s best for your smile!
Did you have spacing and a gap in your teeth? Which type of treatment worked the best in your situation? Braces or Veneers? Comment below!