Many people are born with gaps between their teeth, especially the two front teeth. These gaps can be a simple aesthetic difference or the cause of dental problems. 1AND1 Life’s Washington, D.C. dentist, Charles White, DDS, shares the following facts about your gaps with WebMD Connect to Care.
The technical term for the space between the teeth is a diastema.
Diastema for a single cavity or diastema for multiple cavities is the term used by dental professionals to describe the space between your teeth. Cavities can be anywhere in your mouth, but they usually occur between the upper two molars, or the two front teeth.
Many factors can cause cavities to form between your teeth.
Gaps between the teeth often result from being born with a jaw that is too large for the teeth, or teeth that are too small for the jaw. “The most common cause of cavities is a discrepancy in tooth size and jaw,” says White. Additional factors that cause cavities include:
Have a big tongue
There is not always a clinical reason for removing gaps between teeth.
Many people who want to get rid of gaps between their teeth do so because they don’t like the way they look. In some cases, the gap between the teeth is not a health problem, but a cosmetic preference.
However, decayed teeth can cause speech and dental problems in some people. If you want to eliminate gaps between your teeth, invisible aligners or cosmetic options like veneers and crowns may be your options.
Gaps are hereditary.
Gaps between teeth can have many causes, but some gaps and misalignment problems are genetic. “The gap is genetic,” explains White. “So if both of your parents had cavities, there’s a good chance you will too.”
Gaps in teeth are a sign of beauty in many parts of the world.
Beauty standards vary widely around the world. Front teeth spacing is not a common cosmetic standard in the United States, but it is in other countries such as Ghana and Nigeria. In these cultures, gaping front teeth are considered a sign of beauty and attractiveness, leading some people to even enlarge their gaps.
The space between the teeth is becoming more and more vogue.
For many people, the space between their front teeth is not a problem, but rather what makes them unique. A number of celebrities including Uzo Oduba, Elton John and Eddie Murphy have embraced gap teeth and made it part of their image. This, combined with changing beauty trends, could contribute to their career success.
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