Approximately 25-30% of the population have spacing between their teeth and more specifically between their 2 front teeth. Dentists refer to this as a "diastema". Depending on the size of the diastema and the conditions of the surrounding teeth, they are often time multiple options for closing the spaces that exist between teeth.

 

The three most common options are:

1. Bonding/Composite/Tooth Colored Fillings

2. Orthodontics/Invisalign

3. Veneers/Crowns

 

Bonding refers to chemically attaching tooth colored filling material to the existing teeth in order to eliminate spacing. It is conservative in that it requires little to no preparation ("filing down of the teeth") and can be accomplished in a very short amount of time. It is the most inexpensive option, however does have limitations. Bonding can stain a lot easier around the outside edges of the material and is more brittle and can potentially chip or fracture with hard, crunchy or sticky foods.

 

Orthodontics/Invisalign is another method that can treat the spaces by orthodontically (via braces) moving the teeth into more favorable positions to close the space. It is conservative in that it also requires no preparation or filing down of the teeth. It can also help address other spaces or crowding in other areas of the mouth. It is more comprehensive in that all issues with spacing and crowding can be addressed at the same time. The disadvantages is that the cost is significantly more and does take more time typically anywhere from 6-18 months depending on the situation.

 

Veneers/Crowns are the most commonly used method for closing spaces. Veneers and crowns are porcelain restoration (aka "facings") that are glued over the existing teeth. By using porcelain, the dentist can modify the shape, color, length and size of the teeth to accommodate the spacing. Esthetically, it is a great option and takes much less time than doing orthodontics. The disadvantages is that the teeth almost always require light to moderate preparation of the teeth in order to create the room needed to glue veneers/crowns over the teeth. It is moderate in cost when compared to orthodontics and bonding but nevertheless continues to be the most highly sought out option.

 

Talk to your dentist about what option is best for you to close spaces between the teeth!

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