Diastema is the gap between teeth. The gap can occur anywhere in the mouth. But it becomes noticeable when it occurs between the front teeth. While some gaps are small and can be hardly seen, larger gaps can be unsightly. Both adults and children suffer from this condition. However, diastema in young children disappears naturally, when permanent teeth erupt.
According to our Allentown orthodontist there are many causes for diastema.
Causes of Diastema
- The relation between the size of the teeth and jaw bone is one of the contributing factors for diastema. If the size of the teeth is too small in relation to the jaw bone, there are high chances of developing a gap because the teeth are spaced far apart.
- The size of the teeth and jaw bone is determined by genes. Hence in some cases, diastema can be hereditary.
- Overgrowth of tissue between the gum line and the upper teeth can also result in creation of gap between the two front upper teeth.
- Thumb sucking can lead to diastema as the sucking motion creates pressure on the teeth and causes them to move.
- Tongue thrust due to wrong swallowing action can also put pressure on the front teeth and result in a gap.
- Certain gum diseases can result in loss of teeth, and cause diastema.
Treatment Options for Diastema
The treatment for diastema depends on the contributing factors. Some options include
- If the diastema in children is due to losing temporary teeth, it does not require any treatment.
- Bad habits like thumb sucking and tongue thrust should be carefully corrected. Your orthodontist will advise different methods to resolve these issues.
- If the teeth are far apart, the gaps can be closed using braces. Braces move the teeth close and cure diastema.
- If the gaps and very small, the orthodontist may suggest filling the gaps using cosmetic options such as veneers or bonding techniques.
- Dental implants or bridges can be used to replace missing teeth and close the gap.
- If the condition occurs due to overgrowth of the gum tissue, the orthodontist can suggest a minor surgery to remove the excess gum tissue. And then use braces to close the gap.
The appearance of gaps between teeth is referred to as diastema. It can occur in both young children and adults. It is advisable to consult an Allentown orthodontist to diagnose the causes for diastema and devise a suitable treatment plan.