What causes dental spacing?
There are many reasons why people develop spaces between their teeth. Here are some of the most common scenarios:
- A missing tooth has left a gap
- Your teeth are small relative to the size of your jaws
- Persistent thumb sucking has pushed your teeth out of line
- A large frenum has separated your front teeth to form a diastema
- Gum disease has damaged the tissues that support your teeth, leading to gaps and even tooth loss
Why we treat gaps and spaces
Gaps are expected when you have a mix of baby and adult teeth. If your adult teeth have come through and you still have gaps, you may want to act.
Depending on the extent of your spacing, gaps can leave your gum more vulnerable to damage and inflammation. Over time your teeth could start to drift, leading to larger gaps or crooked teeth.
Orthodontic treatment won’t just straighten your teeth and close your gaps. After removing your braces, we’ll fit retainers to maintain your smile and prevent future shifting.
Most people seek orthodontic treatment because they’re unhappy with the appearance of their teeth. If you love your gaps, you don’t need braces providing your teeth and gums are healthy.
Treatments for spaced teeth
If you want to tackle your spaces, you can choose from all of our popular treatments, including fixed braces and clear aligners. During your initial consultation, we’ll go through all your options so that you can make an informed decision.
Fixed braces close gaps using brackets and metal archwires. We’ll attach your braces to your teeth for the duration of your treatment. You can choose between metal and clear ceramic brackets.
Fixed braces have been tried and trusted for decades. They’re a popular choice among our youngest patients, who enjoy customising their brackets with coloured elastic ligatures.
Invisalign is a convenient alternative to fixed braces. It straightens teeth using a sequence of clear, removable aligners. There are no brackets or wires, and you can take your aligners out to eat and drink.
You’ll need to wear your aligners for at least 2o hours each day. Every 1–2 weeks, you’ll move on to the next set of aligners in the sequence. Before you start wearing your aligners, we’ll show you a step-by-step 3D preview of your planned transformation.
Cosmetic braces are a quick and cost-effective way to close gaps between your front teeth. Using clear, ceramic fixed braces, we’ll focus on straightening your front 6–8 teeth.
If you have mild spacing and we’re happy with how your teeth bite together, cosmetic braces can be an excellent option. Treatment times are sometimes as little as six months.
How to stop gaps from returning
When we remove your braces, we’ll fit retainers to hold your teeth in their new positions. Without retainers, your gaps are likely to reappear, so retention is a lifelong commitment.
We include removable retainers and one year of aftercare for every patient. Removable retainers are made from clear plastic and custom-made to fit your teeth to prevent them from moving.
You can also opt for a fixed retainer, which consists of a thin metal wire that we attach behind your front teeth. This wire can stay in place indefinitely for extra peace of mind.
To learn more about closing gaps and keeping teeth straight, visit our specialist orthodontist in Clonmel for a no-obligation consultation.