Perfect teeth are hard to come by, and most people often need a little help along the way. If you notice your child developing gaps between their teeth as they grow, this is a completely normal and common feature of growing teeth. It’s also easy to fix if addressed in childhood with a trip to the orthodontist to help the teeth grow in a straighter, more comfortable way. At iSmile Orthodontics, we recommend starting your children’s orthodontic visits from the age of seven to curb the need for any future treatment.
Why the gap?
Gapping in teeth – also called diastema – is a common growth occurrence in teeth where gapping occurs, most often between the front two teeth, although it can occur anywhere. This can be caused by natural features such as a misalignment in the jaw or a mismatched jaw to teeth ratio. If the piece of skin under your upper lip – the labial frenum – is large than normal, this can also grow between the front two teeth, pushing them apart.
Other behavioural problems that can cause diastema include thumb-sucking or regular occurrences of tongue thrusting, both of which are behavioural traits that can push the front teeth outward.
When gapping occurs between two teeth, often other teeth may try to fill in the space, causing further gapping in other areas. Addressing this problem in childhood is a good way to catch the issue early on, as gaps in teeth can be difficult for cleaning and chewing, not to mention in your confidence.
In many cases of gapping in teeth, they can be treated with traditional metal braces. These are a popular choice among children and adults at iSmile Orthodontics and will usually be worn on both the top and the bottom sets of teeth for complete teeth and jaw realignment. In cases where there are several teeth far away from each other, or teeth growing to accommodate for the extra space, traditional metal braces are a highly recommended option.
Once braces are applied, the wires will be tightened or changed every 6 to 8 weeks, which may result in some extra pressure against the teeth that quickly goes away within a few hours. Braces are good option for those on a budget, and can often be subtle in appearance and a fast working option for orthodontics for children.
Teenage years can be particularly sensitive, and our Invisalign option offers the top choice in subtlety and confidence boosting. A custom-made, virtually invisible appliance that slots right onto teeth, Invisalign offers the same effectiveness as normal braces to give your child that perfect smile.
Sometimes, gapping in teeth can be a result of missing adult teeth. These teeth never grow in, resulting in very large gaps in the smile and causing some difficulty with cleaning and hygiene. In these more unusual cases, false teeth may be required. Our false teeth at iSmile Orthodontics slot in seamlessly with the rest of the teeth, creating that perfect smile that your child will love showing off. Check out our results page for an example of missing upper laterals replaced with false teeth and get in touch here for your complimentary evaluation.