Common Problems Caused by Gapped Teeth

Do you have gaps or wide spaces between your teeth? Maybe you do but you’re not bothered by their appearance. However, having widely spaced teeth holds other concerns besides just the way they look.

There are certain dental problems that are caused by, or more likely to occur when you have excessive spacing. Here are just a few:

1. Food Impaction: Having gapped teeth often causes food to get trapped in certain areas of your smile. Not only is it tedious to clean, but it also increases your risk of infection.

2. Gingivitis: If you don’t eliminate the plaque or food between your teeth on a daily basis,
then you’re more likely to develop gingivitis (which is the early stages of gum disease.) Signs of gingivitis include redness, bleeding, swelling, and soreness of the gums.

3. Gum Disease: As gingivitis continues to go undetected or ignored, gum disease will cause tissue detachment and “pockets” around your gapped teeth. You may also begin to experience bad breath, receding gumlines, or bone loss.

4. Tooth Decay: Leaving food or plaque between gapped teeth for long periods is damaging to the healthy tooth structure. Decay is an irreversible condition and unfortunately, gapped areas are more prone to cavities than straight teeth are.

5. Premature Wear and TMJD: When your teeth don’t line up together properly, gapped teeth can cause several issues like excessive wear on certain teeth or joint pain.

Young Children and Gapped Teeth

What about kids who have spaced teeth 一 is this an issue as well? While some of the above
concerns do apply to children, it’s actually more of a positive thing if your child has gaps between teeth, because the space allows more room for their permanent ones. Adult teeth are bigger than baby teeth, so they require more space once they erupt.

Managing Gapped Teeth

To prevent severe issues from a gapped smile, you want to make sure your oral care routine is on point. Brushing after every meal, regular flossing, and not missing your professional cleaning appointments will help ensure that your gums stay healthy and your teeth are free of decay. Wearing a nightguard can help prevent excessive and irregular wear patterns as well. Nightguards are available over the counter or a custom fit one can be made by our dentist.

Fixing Gapped Teeth

A gapped smile should be evaluated by a dental professional so that a custom treatment plan
can be developed, if necessary. Suggested procedures may include orthodontics like braces or clear aligner therapy, restorations like crowns, or dental implants, or even a retainer to prevent tooth movement. Ultimately the health of your teeth impacts their function just as much as your overall appearance.

If you have gapped teeth, contact our Temple dentist to schedule a consultation.
Dr. Megens and the excellent team of Legacy Dental are glad to meet with you and address each of your oral health concerns. Don’t wait any longer. Make an appointment with us today.