How to Fix Gap Teeth: A Comprehensive Guide

Young girl with broad grin shows her gap teeth smile

Is your child self-conscious about the gap between their teeth?

Do they hide their smile or feel embarrassed when they talk to people?

They are not alone!

Many children have gaps between their teeth, but fortunately, there are several ways to fix them.

In this article, we’ll explore the causes of gap teeth and the different treatment options available.

What are gap teeth?

Gap teeth, also known as diastema, is a common dental condition where there is a noticeable space or gap between two or more teeth.

This gap can occur between any teeth, but it is most common between the two upper front teeth.

While gap teeth are not a serious dental problem, they can cause self-consciousness, affect speech, and lead to poor oral health.

What causes gap teeth?

Several factors, including genetics, poor oral habits, and certain medical conditions, can cause gap teeth. Here are some common causes of gap teeth:


You may inherit the trait if one or both of your parents have gap teeth.

Tongue thrusting

This is a habit where the tongue pushes against the front teeth when swallowing, causing them to move forward and create a gap.

Thumb sucking

This habit can cause the front teeth to move forward, creating a gap.

Gum disease

Gum disease can cause the gums to recede, creating gaps between the teeth.

Missing teeth

When you lose a tooth, the surrounding teeth may shift, creating gaps between the remaining teeth.

The impact of dental gaps on children

Dental gaps in children can have several consequences beyond just the aesthetics of their smile.

Let’s explore the potential impacts of dental gaps:

Aesthetics and self-confidence

Dental gaps can affect a child’s self-esteem and confidence.

Children may feel self-conscious about their smiles, impacting their social interactions and overall well-being.

Addressing dental gaps can help improve their self-confidence and allow them to embrace their smile.

Speech development

Dental gaps can influence speech development in children, which may affect the pronunciation of certain sounds, leading to speech difficulties.

Fixing dental gaps can help children articulate sounds correctly and enhance their speech development.

Chewing and digestion

Gaps between teeth can make it challenging for children to chew food properly, and this can affect their ability to consume a balanced diet and may lead to digestive issues.

Children can regain proper chewing function by correcting dental gaps and ensuring adequate nutrition and digestion.

Dental health and potential complications

Dental gaps can pose oral health risks for children.

The spaces between teeth can accumulate food particles and bacteria, increasing the risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath.

Additionally, misaligned teeth due to gaps can result in bite problems and jaw misalignment. Addressing dental gaps early on can help prevent these potential complications.

How to fix gap teeth

Fortunately, there are several ways to fix gap teeth, depending on the severity of the condition. Here are the most common treatment options:


Braces are popular and effective ways to fix gap teeth.

They work by applying pressure to the teeth, gradually moving them into the correct position.

Braces are typically worn for 12-24 months, depending on the severity of the gap and the patient’s age.

While braces are effective, they require a significant commitment to maintain good oral hygiene.

Clear aligners

Clear aligners are a popular alternative to braces for fixing gap teeth.

This treatment involves wearing clear aligners that gradually move the teeth into the correct position.

Clear aligners are less noticeable than braces and can be removed for eating and cleaning.

Maintaining Good Oral Health

Regardless of which treatment option you choose, it’s essential to maintain good oral hygiene to prevent further dental problems.

Brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and visiting your dentist regularly can help prevent tooth decay and gum disease.


Gap teeth can be a source of self-consciousness and affect your child’s oral health.

Maintaining good oral hygiene and visiting your dentist regularly can keep your teeth healthy and prevent further dental problems.


Book a consultation today and explore your options for fixing gap teeth.

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iGrin Pediatric Dentistry serves young smiles in Boiling Springs, Powdersville, SC, and welcomes visitors from the neighboring areas.

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