Source: Medicalnewstoday.com (What is a diastema?)
Source Link: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/diastema#symptoms
A gap between the teeth is known as a diastema. It is harmless and can be found in both children and adults. When a child's permanent teeth come through, the gap usually closes.
A diastema is a gap of more than 0.5 millimeters between teeth. It can form between any two teeth.
Treatment is rarely required for medical reasons. If a person dislikes the appearance of their diastema, however, the gap can be closed or narrowed. We'll look at the causes of diastemas, as well as how to treat and prevent them, in this article.
A diastema can occur as a result of the following:
1. The relationship between the size of the teeth and the size of the jawbone
Gaps between teeth can form if a person's teeth are too small in comparison to the size of their jawbone. Diastemas can run in families because jawbone and tooth sizes are genetically determined.
2. Teeth that are missing or are too small
A diastema can form when some teeth are missing or are smaller than others.
The upper lateral incisors — the teeth on either side of the two upper front teeth — are frequently involved. A gap can form between the two front teeth if the upper lateral incisors are missing or small.
3. The labial frenum is disproportionately large.
The labial frenum is a piece of tissue that runs from the inside of the upper lip to the gum line above the upper front teeth. This tissue can cause a gap between these teeth if it is particularly large.
4. Gum disease
The migration of teeth is a common symptom of advanced gum disease. Inflammation of the gums causes damage to the bone that supports the teeth in people with gum disease. Teeth can become loose over time, causing gaps to appear.
Thumb sucking, lip sucking, tongue thrusting, and other habits can put pressure on the front teeth, causing them to move forward. This can result in a diastema.
A diastema may not require treatment, particularly if the gap is caused by a mismatch between the size of the teeth and the jawbone, or if it is caused by the loss of primary teeth.
A dentist can help determine the best approach if treatment is not medically necessary but the person wishes to close the gap for aesthetic reasons.
There are several treatment options available, including:
Braces are commonly used by dentists to treat diastemas. The braces apply pressure to the teeth, gradually closing the gap.
Even if there is only one gap, it may be necessary to wear a full set of braces because moving any teeth affects the entire mouth.
When a diastema is caused by an oversized labial frenum, the dentist may suggest a frenectomy, which involves removing the excess tissue.
3. Dental implants or a bridge
If a diastema exists due to missing teeth, more extensive dental work, such as implants or a dental bridge, may be required.
Dental implants are placed by screwing metal screws into the jawbone and attaching replacement teeth to them.
4. Bonding vs. veneers
These options may be especially beneficial if the diastema is caused by the presence of smaller teeth.
Dental bonding entails applying resin to the teeth's surface and hardening it with a light source.
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