What is a Diastema?
A “diastema” is an area of extra space between two or more teeth. The two front teeth of the upper jaw area is where diastema is most frequently seen. Many children experience diastema as primary teeth fall out, though in most cases these spaces close when the permanent teeth erupt.
Diastemas may also be caused by a tooth size discrepancy, missing teeth or an oversized labial frenum, the tissue that extends from the inside of the lip to the gum tissue where the upper two front teeth are located. Secondary reasons involve oral alignment issues such as an overjet or protrusion of the teeth.
A diastema that occurs because of a mismatch between the teeth and the jaw does not have symptoms. However, spaces caused by a tongue thrust habit or periodontal disease will tend to expand or grow with time. The teeth may become loose, and discomfort or pain may occur, particularly during biting or chewing.
When To Call Meigeer Dental?
If you have a space between your teeth or see one in your child's mouth, talk with Meigeer dentist. He or she will determine the reason for the space and may refer you to an orthodontist, a specialist in treatment with braces. If your space is the result of periodontal disease, your dentist may refer you to a periodontist.
What are My Treatment Options?
Once your dentist or dental specialist has determined the reason for your diastema, a treatment plan will be discussed. Options may include:
Keep the diastema.
Orthodontic treatment to move the teeth and close the diastema.
Use porcelain veneers, very thin pieces of porcelain bonded to the outside of the teeth.
Crown and bridge work or replacement of teeth with implants (adults only).
If you have an oversized labial frenum, you may be referred to a periodontist for an oral consultation and surgical procedure called a frenectomy. If the frenectomy is conducted on a child, the space may close by itself. If it is a teenager or adult, the space may need to be closed with braces. A consultation with Meigeer dentist is essential to determine which option is the right option to treatment for you.