Friday - - Beauty -

Q I’m 30 years old and I have small gaps in my front teeth. I am an ex­tremely self-con­scious per­son as my job role in­volves meet­ing new peo­ple. This makes me re­ally hes­i­tant to opt for braces. Any ad­vice? A Gen­er­ally, spac­ing be­tween the teeth ap­pears un­aes­thetic and is cor­rected by or­tho­don­tists and cos­metic den­tists.

There are sev­eral op­tions to cor­rect your prob­lem and close the spaces. Orthodon­tics is one. Un­like in the past, where we only had metal and ce­ramic braces, which are vis­i­ble, now you can choose from other op­tions to straighten your teeth and close the spac­ing. In some cases, if the tooth size is very small you might have to also do an aes­thetic cos­metic pro­ce­dure to in­crease the size of the teeth, along with orthodon­tics.

The first method is In­visalign – a clear al­ter­na­tive to braces. It uses a series of clear align­ers that are vir­tu­ally in­vis­i­ble. It does not in­ter­fere with your life­style and you can eat what­ever you want.

An­other op­tion are lin­gual in­vis­i­ble braces. Th­ese are cus­tom-made braces that are bonded be­hind your teeth so they are to­tally in­vis­i­ble. It can cor­rect the most com­pli­cated of cases and give you the re­sult you de­sire. How­ever, you need to choose a den­tist who has con­sid­er­able ex­pe­ri­ence in us­ing lin­gual braces.

Porce­lain or com­pos­ite ve­neers are an­other op­tion. It can give very good re­sults, but if the gaps are too large, the re­sult may not be too aes­thetic as it in­creases the size of the teeth. Porce­lain ve­neers are thin porce­lain shells that are bonded on top of your ex­ist­ing teeth. They are ideal for pa­tients who have gaps be­tween teeth, frac­tured or dis­coloured teeth. The den­tist re­moves a thin layer of tooth enamel and then bonds the ve­neers, cus­tom-made in a lab, to your teeth.

Com­pos­ite bind­ing in­volves adding a thin fa­cade on the front of your teeth. In­stead of porce­lain, a tooth-coloured resin is used that is shaped and ap­plied to your teeth us­ing ad­he­sives. The ad­van­tage is that it can be done in one ap­point­ment and is gen­er­ally cheaper. The dis­ad­van­tage: They gen­er­ally do not have the same longevity as porce­lain ve­neers as they tend to stain and break eas­ily.

It is gen­er­ally not ad­vis­able to do crowns to close the spac­ing un­less your teeth are ex­ten­sively dam­aged, as this in­volves re­mov­ing a con­sid­er­able amount of the tooth struc­ture and cov­er­ing your teeth all around with a crown.

If the spac­ing in your teeth is due to a miss­ing tooth then you will have to con­sider clos­ing that gap with orthodon­tics or re­plac­ing the miss­ing tooth.

Whichever method you choose, be sure to main­tain strict den­tal hy­giene dur­ing and af­ter treat­ment to en­sure that your teeth re­main healthy.

DR JOY ANTONY is a Dubai-based or­tho­don­tist

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.