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Can Invisalign Fix Teeth Gaps?

May 11, 2022
by: Dr. Ammons

If you have gaps between your teeth, you are in luck; clear aligners may be the solution to misaligned teeth, including those with gaps. Gaps may not cause pain or discomfort but they can over time cause issues that make correcting them now prudent. For instance, it may be harder to maintain good dental hygiene with gaps that can trap particles and plaque, possibly contributing to tooth decay over time.

So, what exactly are teeth gaps? These are extra spaces that can be between two- or more- teeth, causing spacing issues that impact hygiene, speech, and eating. Most patients report the biggest repercussion of gaps is the impact that it has on their overall appearance, and in some cases, their self-esteem and confidence.

Some problems that gapping between your teeth may cause include:

  • Gaps between your teeth may cause there to be little pockets where food particles can become trapped. When food becomes caught, it could cause decay over time.
  • Gapping and subsequent plaque can cause gum swelling- possibly leading to periodontal disease. If you notice swelling of the gums or chronic bad breath, you could be in the early stages of periodontal disease; see your dentist to learn more.
  • Gapped teeth may impact your self-confidence. If you are unhappy with your smile, it may be tough to want to smile and engage with others. Invisalign may be able to help give you the best smile of your life.
  • The effects of Invisalign treatment can shave years off the appearance of patients. Check out the results including before and after photos

Many patients are not willing or able to commit to traditional metal braces for one reason or another. Invisalign and other clear aligners present an option that is less intrusive, more discreet, and faster. Plus, the convenience of being able to remove the aligner for eating and cleaning is a big advantage. When it comes to fixing realignment issues, Invisalign aligners have shown efficacy and success at correcting gap teeth and transforming patients' smiles across the globe, with ease, convenience, and comfort.

Diastema or Teeth Gaps

Gapping between your teeth, or diastema, is typically hereditary. That means that if your parents had gaps between their teeth, you might, also. It results from the formation of the tissue between the lips and gums- which is generally genetic.

The good news is that gapped teeth is not hazardous or potentially dangerous, but it can cause ramifications that have health repercussions. Additionally, individuals with severe gaps may also have misalignment issues like overbites or underbites. If the gaps between your teeth cause you difficulty, see your dental provider to assess your options.

Correcting Gaps Between your Teeth

Are you avoiding correcting the gap between your teeth? It may be easier than you think to close your dental gap and restore your smile. If the gap is severe, i.e., over 6mm, you may require traditional metal braces to resolve the gap. However, if the gap is narrower, you may be able to correct it without headgear, braces, or wires.

Many orthodontists are turning to the ease and convenience of clear aligners for their patients with gaps between their teeth. In other cases, the dental provider may recommend procedures to correct the gap that include crowns, veneers, or bonding. Ultimately, the decision should be made with your dentist and in a timely fashion; if left untreated, a diastema can widen or worsen.

Invisalign for Diastema, or Tooth Gaps

So, does Invisalign work for closing gaps? That question is dependent on how severe and wide the gap between the teeth is. If the gap is subtle or small, it may only take a few months of treatment, as little as three, with Invisalign; for more severe gaps, it could take up to 18 months. On average, it takes about a year for Invisalign treatment on most types of misalignment issues- but your dental provider can provide more insight after evaluating your teeth.

If your teeth are gapped more than six millimeters on either the top arch or the bottom arch of your teeth, Invisalign and clear aligners may not be the best option. Before you get your hopes up, there are some dental situations that Invisalign cannot help, including:

  • Short, pegged, or pointy teeth make it difficult for the aligners to stay secure so if your teeth are shaped like this, you may not be a good candidate for an aligner. That's okay- there are other options available! Talk to your dental provider to learn more.
  • If your mouth is crowded and your teeth have begun to tilt, you may not be able to wear aligners. Tilted molars present the most difficulty and make it tough to be fitted for Invisalign alignment trays.
  • Aligners are not as effective as metal braces for severe cases of dental intrusion and extrusion.
  • Individuals that have had previous dental work, like bridges, veneers, or crowns, are not a good candidate for clear aligners. The fixtures do not bond the same way to the teeth that is necessary for optimal straightening. Also, if you plan on having any of these dental procedures done soon, you are not a candidate for this particular option.
  • If you need teeth extracted, talk to your dentist about your appropriateness for Invisalign.

Think about it this way: anything that you do to your teeth, even the most miniscule change, can and does impact the alignment trays that your dentist has made for you to wear incrementally to realign the teeth. Dental work or tooth trauma can render the aligners ineffective.

If you live in South Carolina, talk to the team at Ammons Dental by Design to learn more about treatment options for your teeth gaps. Dr. Michael Ammons can provide an evaluation to determine if Invisalign is a viable option for correcting your alignment issue and restoring your smile. Contact us today to learn more or to schedule your appointment. We have locations in downtown Charleston, Summerville, James Island, and Camden, for your convenience.

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Multiple Convenient Dental Locations Near Charleston

Ammons Dental By Design has four locations so you can find the most convenient office for your family.
1015 Fair St.
Camden, SC 29020
Monday – Thursday:
8am – 5pm
P: (803) 969-0365
F: (803) 432-2625
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14 Lockwood Dr,
Charleston, SC 29401
(Suite A on the exterior of the Ashley House Building, across from the marina)
Monday – Thursday:
7am - 4pm
P: (843) 380-2734
F: (843) 577-4464
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1739-B Maybank Hwy.
Charleston, SC 29412
Tuesday – Friday:
7am - 4pm
P: (843) 380-8889
F: (843) 990-9504
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1710 Old Trolley., Ste.B
Summerville, SC 29485
Tuesday – Thursday: 8am – 5pm
Monday & Friday*: 8am – 5pm
*Rotating schedule
P: (843) 380-8904
F: (843) 871-0617
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