Invisalign® Clear Aligners - Woodland Hills, CA

Invisalign® and Tooth Gaps

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Closing the Gap With Invisalign®

Tooth gaps, or diastema, can be a cosmetic concern for many individuals. While some people embrace the diastema as a unique characteristic, others desire a more aligned smile. If left untreated, tooth gaps can cause oral health problems, such as gum disease or tooth decay. If you’re considering closing a tooth gap, Invisalign could be a great option.

Dr. Chaves is here to provide personalized solutions that meet your specific needs. Contact our Woodland Hills dental office today at 818-491-7294.

Compared to bulky wire braces, Invisalign offers an alternative that can help straighten even the most severely misaligned teeth.

What Are Tooth Gaps?

A tooth gap is a space between two teeth that can occur for various reasons. There are two main types of tooth gaps:

  • Midline diastema: This is a gap between the two upper front teeth (central incisors). It’s the most common type of tooth gap.
  • Interdental diastema: This is a gap between any other two teeth in the mouth.


Common causes of tooth gaps include:

  • Size and Growth Discrepancies: If your teeth are small compared to your jawbone, gaps can occur. This can also happen when your upper and lower jaws aren’t the same size, resulting in either an overbite or underbite, which can create spaces between teeth.
  • Genetics: Tooth gaps can be hereditary. If one or both of your parents have a diastema, you are more likely to have one as well.
  • Mismatch Between the Size of the Jaw Bones and Teeth: If the jaw is too large and the teeth too small, gaps can appear. Conversely, if the teeth are too large for the mouth, overcrowding can occur.
  • Missing or Undersized Teeth: Some people may naturally have one or more missing teeth, or their teeth may be smaller than average, creating gaps.
  • Habits and Other Health Issues: Certain habits, such as thumb-sucking in children, or the improper swallowing reflex, can cause tooth gaps. Gum disease, which can lead to tooth loss, may also result in gaps between teeth.
  • Tissue Overgrowth: The piece of tissue that extends from the gum to the upper lip, known as the labial frenum, can sometimes overgrow, leading to a gap between the upper front teeth.
cosmetic dentistry patient smiling in exam chair

How Tooth Gaps Can Close With Invisalign

Invisalign is an orthodontic treatment that can help close gaps between teeth. Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign uses a series of clear, removable aligners to gradually shift your teeth into the desired position.

Here’s why Invisalign is well-suited for gap tooth closure:

  • Precise Control: Invisalign treatment plans are created using digital scans and 3D modeling technology. This allows for precise control over tooth movement, ensuring the gapped teeth are closed accurately.
  • Gradual Force: The gentle, continuous pressure exerted by the aligners minimizes discomfort and allows for comfortable tooth movement.
  • Multiple Aligners: Throughout the treatment, you’ll wear a series of progressively different aligners. Each aligner targets specific tooth movements, gradually closing the gaps over time.
Dr. John M. Chaves, DDS
sedation patient

Do I Need to Close a Tooth Gap?

Whether or not you need to correct a tooth gap largely depends on personal preference and any associated oral health issues.

  • Aesthetics: If you’re uncomfortable or self-conscious about your gap teeth, you might choose to have them corrected for cosmetic reasons. The perception of beauty varies widely from person to person, and what one person might find attractive, another may not. It’s ultimately your decision if you want to change your smile for aesthetic reasons.
  • Oral Health: Some tooth gaps, especially larger ones, can potentially increase the risk of gum disease because they may expose the gum line to more bacteria and plaque. In some cases, a dentist might recommend closing the gap to improve oral health.
  • Function: If the gap is causing functional problems, such as affecting your bite or causing difficulty chewing or speaking, then it might be necessary to consider having it corrected.
  • Progression: If the gap is getting bigger over time, it may indicate an underlying issue, such as gum disease or habits like tongue thrusting. In such cases, it may be recommended to close the gap to prevent further issues.

Limitations of Invisalign for Gapped Teeth

While Invisalign is a versatile treatment, there are some limitations to consider for gap closure:

Frequently Asked Questions

Tooth gaps can be both a cosmetic concern and a potential oral health problem. Food particles can get stuck in between gaps, leading to plaque buildup and potential gum disease or tooth decay. Additionally, gaps can cause teeth to shift, leading to bite problems or jaw pain.

Yes, braces are a common orthodontic treatment used to fix tooth gaps. Traditional metal braces use brackets and wires to gradually shift teeth into the desired position. Clear aligners, such as Invisalign, can also be used to close gaps between teeth.

There are no proven home remedies to fix tooth gaps. In some cases, orthodontic treatment may be unnecessary if the gap is small and not causing any oral health problems. However, it’s always best to consult with a dentist or orthodontist to determine the best course of action for your specific case.

Contact John M. Chaves, DDS, Today!

From the moment you step into our office, we'll go over your treatment options and work with you to design a customized orthodontic plan that fits your lifestyle and helps you achieve your desired results. Reach out to us today at our Woodland Hills dental office by calling 818-491-7294 to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards a brighter, more confident future with Invisalign.

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