Orthodontics is the art of teeth alignment. To close gaps, to straighten crowded adult teeth, to align teeth after they have shifted after braces (We call this relapse) e.g “Gaps between teeth”
What are we talking about when we say we have gaps between the teeth?
Teeth that are not perfectly in line and touching each other, either due to genetics, dental problems or tooth loss. It’s the opposite of dental crowding, where teeth overlap and are crooked. For some people, including celebrities such as Madonna and Lara Stone, gaps are part of their character. For others, multiple gaps can look unsightly and alter the facial symmetry.
What are the choices when I look for orthodontics to close my gaps?
Simply put, you can either add to the teeth, filling in gaps, or push teeth together, closing gaps. To fill in gaps, you can use tooth-coloured cosmetic fillings, bridges, veneers or dental implants. For closing gaps, there’s a choice of braces: the Inman® ‘Speed Brace’, which treats the front teeth only, Invisalign® ‘Invisible Braces’ or fixed braces, both of which treat full arches, and other, custom-made clear aligners, which can treat individual teeth. On occasion, teeth can be moved using a brace to create space for an implant.
Can I see the predicted result when I visit an orthodontist or dentist asking for orthodontics?
In most cases, yes. This can be done by mocking up wax teeth on a model of the patient’s teeth, which can then be tried in the mouth. Teeth can also be built up using white or tooth-coloured fillings which can be chipped off if the patient isn’t happy. With Invisalign®, a DVD simulation shows the likely tooth movements while with Inman®, a model cast is made.
What does orthodontics involve when I want a gap filled?
With braces, impressions are taken (Or a scan if the surgery has the technology) and then the brace or clear aligners are custom-made to fit perfectly over the teeth, applying gentle, precise pressure to move teeth.
How long do they last?
With veneers, bridges and crowns, it largely depends on how well you look after them, but 10-15 years is a ballpark. Implants should last 15-25+ years. Teeth that have been moved using a brace can move back if a retainer isn’t worn as directed after treatment.
I always approach gaps with caution and develop treatment plans based on the level of health gain. I always favour minimally invasive techniques, but sometimes these may not be sufficient to achieve the desired outcome, although for most patients the upsides far outweigh any downsides.
White fillings from £85; Veneers from £500 per tooth; Bridges from £300 per unit, but it depends on the number of teeth; Crowns from £300 per tooth; Inman® £1,500 per arch; Invisalign® from £3,500 for both arches. As ever, go for trust and experience not cost.https://thewhytehouse.com/dental-treatment-fee-exeter/
Quote: “Your problem is to bridge the gap which exists between where you are now and the goal you intend to reach.” Earl Nightingale