How to Fix Gap in Teeth (With Braces) Queries Answered


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Evidence Based - Facts Checked

This content is medically reviewed by Dr. Navneet Singh and written by Dr. Vijaya Dutta

Last Medical Review Date - 6th November 2020


The extra gap in between your teeth bothers you, and you are looking for a way to fix the gap, braces is one of the best available solutions. The following are the various types of braces available in the market that can help you fix the gap in the teeth.  

Fixing Gap in Teeth with Braces

Though time-consuming, braces are considered better than other available solutions to fix the gap in teeth. 

Let’s take a quick look into the treatment options available

1- Traditional Braces

Braces are preferred when the gap in the teeth is considerable, and it cannot be filled with conservative dental techniques. It is also a preferred way to fix the gap in teeth when a comprehensive treatment (fixing the gap plus aligning the teeth) is required for deranged teeth, such as crowding, misaligned teeth, etc1Huang, W. J., & Creath, C. J. (1995). 'The midline diastema: A review of its etiology and treatment' Source.

How traditional braces fill the space?

Traditional fixed braces cause bodily movement (movement of entire teeth). Because of the force (inward or outward, depending on the current alignment of teeth), the teeth come close to each other, align in shape, and at the same time also fix the gap in the teeth.

Traditional Braces

Treatment of spacing in teeth with Traditional Braces2Orthodontics by S.L. Bhalaji

Advantages

Effective in fixing considerable gap in teeth and in cases where associated problem like crowding of teeth is present

Disadvantages

- Braces are costly as compared to veneers, crown and partial removable denture

- Time taken by braces to fix the gap in teeth is around 6-9 months, which requires multiple visits to a dentist

- Quality of life gets affected as an individual with braces may not be able to bite food items like meat, fruits, etc. Also, maintaining oral hygiene becomes quite challenging with braces on teeth

- It is not aesthetic in appearance

- Retainers are used for 3-4 months after removing the braces to keep the aligned teeth in place. If not used in a disciplined manner, the chances of the relapse of the gap, increases.

Is It For You?

If the space is considerable and if the teeth are misaligned, crooked, crowded, then traditional braces work well in fixing the gap in teeth.

2-  Hidden braces/Lingual braces

To fix the gap in teeth, if you need to wear braces but are conscious about your looks, hidden braces can help you.

How Hidden Braces Fix the Gap in Teeth?

These braces function in the same way as traditional braces, but are hidden as the name suggests. The hidden braces are placed on the teeth’s inner side, which creates an inward force that helps fix the teeth’s gap. 

Hidden braces - Lingual braces

Lingual Braces3Dentistry by S.L. Bhalajhi

Advantages

It is aesthetically appealing as the braces are placed on the inner side of the teeth.

Disadvantages

It is costly as compared to traditional braces

- Only a proficient dentist can use this technique to fix the gap in teeth

- Maintaining oral hygiene becomes even more complicated with hidden braces

Is It For You?

If you have to wear braces because of misaligned teeth, but you don’t want it to be visible to other people, and if you are ready to pay the extra bucks, then Lingual braces/hidden braces is the perfect option for you.

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3-  Invisible Braces or Clear aligners

Invisible braces are made up of plastic material that fits in the mouth between the jaws. It is generally used to close the gap in the teeth of the lower jaw4Pravindevaprasad, A., & Therese, B. A. (2013, July). 'Tooth positioners and their effects on treatment outcome' Source.

How Invisible Braces Fix the Gap in Teeth?

Clear aligners exert pressure and move the teeth together and fix the gap. Once the gap gets fixed, retainers are used to hold the teeth in their position.

Advantage

It is aesthetically pleasing and is very hard for an individual to judge if you are wearing braces.

Disadvantage

- It is beneficial only for mild to moderate spacing

- It is costlier than traditional braces

Is it for You?

If you have mild to moderate space and can afford to pay for the invisible braces, then it’s the best option for you. However, please keep in mind that since the invisible braces can be worn/unworn, you have to be compliant and wear it for the number of hours specified (each day) by your dentist for the best results


What does it involve?

No of visits required for the treatment

Time required for the Treatment

PROS

CONS

Gap Size which it can fix

Conventional Braces

Metallic braces are fixed to the teeth where the metal wire is put under stress to pull the teeth and fix the gap

Multiple visits

6-9 months; however, if you might have issues with gum, teeth, the duration may increase.

-Economical Option as compared to other available braces type

- Aesthetically not pleasant


- Duration of treatment is quite long as compared with the other available dental solutions

For Large gaps

Hidden Braces

Braces on the lingual surface (facing tongue)

Multiple visits

6-9 months

Aesthetically Good

-Costly as compared to conventional braces


-Maintenance of oral hygiene becomes difficult


- Some patients complain for irritation in the tongue


For Large gaps

Invisible Braces

Transparent braces

Multiple visits

3-6 months

-Aesthetically Good

- Very costly as compared to hidden braces and conventional braces

 

- Patient’s compliance in wearing the braces is required, or else the gap shall not be fixed

Mild to moderate gaps



References

  1. 1
    Huang, W. J., & Creath, C. J. (1995).
    The midline diastema: A review of its etiology and treatment.
    Retrieved November 5, 2020, from https://www.aapd.org/globalassets/media/publications/archives/huang-17-03.pdf. 
  2. 2
    Pravindevaprasad, A., & Therese, B. A. (2013, July).
    Tooth positioners and their effects on treatment outcome.
    Retrieved November 5, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3783768/
  3. 3
    Karaganeva, Raya. (2015). Evaluating Clear Aligners: Part 1. Orthodontic Practice. 26 - 30.
    Retrieved November 5, 2020, from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/308209839_Evaluating_Clear_Aligners_Part_1

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This content is only for educational purpose and should not be considered as a substitute for your Physician's/Doctor's clinical judgement

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