Don't let gapped teeth keep you from smiling. Dr. Thomas G. Zarger, Jr. offers various cosmetic dentistry treatments to improve the appearance of the smile and close the spaces left by gapped teeth. To learn more about treatments for gapped teeth, we welcome you to schedule a consultation at Dr. Zarger's Knoxville practice.
What Causes Gapped Teeth?
While many people with gapped teeth have had the gaps since childhood, some may develop gapped teeth over time. For those who have developed gapped teeth over time, it's important to determine the underlying cause. This is because gaps may occur again if the underlying cause is not addressed. Causes of gapped teeth include:
- Large labial frenum: The labial frenum is the tissue that runs along the middle of the upper lip, connecting the upper lip to the gums. Sometimes the labial frenum is oversized, extending between the two, upper front teeth, resulting in a large gap.
- Tongue thrust: Gaps between teeth may develop over time as a result of such oral issues as tongue thrust. Tongue thrust is a swallowing reflex disorder in which the tongue moves forward, pushing against the teeth, instead of up into the roof of the mouth. The regular pressure of the tongue against the teeth can lead to the development of gaps between the teeth.
- Differences between tooth and jaw size: Spaces and gaps between the teeth may also be a result of differences between the size of the teeth in relationship to the jawbone. This is most common when teeth are on the smaller side.
- Tooth loss: Tooth loss can create gaps where teeth are missing, and may also lead to gaps forming between the remaining teeth.
Treatments for Gapped Teeth
Once the cause of a person's gapped teeth is determined, an individualized treatment plan may be created. Some treatments for correcting gapped teeth include:
- Frenectomy: Patients with an oversized labial frenum may require a frenectomy in order to remove excess tissue between the upper teeth. The patient can then undergo treatment to close dental gaps.
- Porcelain veneers: Porcelain veneers are thin, tooth-shaped shells that fit over the front surface of the teeth. Porcelain veneers treatment may be used as instant orthodontics to address gaps and mild alignment issues in as little as two dental visits.
- Dental bonding: Similar to porcelain veneers, dental bonding treatment can also be used to close gaps between teeth and correct other dental imperfections. Dental bonding treatment uses a putty-like resin, which is shaped directly on the teeth and hardened with a special light to create a beautiful, flawless smile.
- Orthodontics: Traditional orthodontics are highly effective at closing gaps between the teeth, in addition to correcting other alignment issues. Orthodontics treatment is especially useful for those who have severe alignment and gap issues.
- Dental implants: Dental implant treatment may be performed to close gaps caused by missing teeth. Dental implants offer permanent replacement of missing teeth to prevent further dental shifting, which can cause additional gaps.
Find Out Which Treatments Are Right for You
Gapped teeth treatment can improve the appearance of your smile. To find out which treatments are right for you, schedule a consultation with Dr. Zarger today.