Diastema is a condition where there is a significant gap between the teeth. This complication is found in both children and adults. Tooth gap can be between any teeth. But the gap between the front teeth is more visible. Sometimes this gap is filled by itself with the growth of permanent teeth in children. It’s just an aesthetic concern for some people, but it can be a serious threat to dental health for others.


What is The Cause of Diastema?

The possible causes of the distance between the teeth are as follows:

  1. Genetic Factors
  2. Natural Growth
  3. Abnormal Position, Size and Shape of Teeth
  4. Missing Teeth
  5. Oversized Labial Frenum
  6. Periodontitis
  7. Incorrect Swallowing Reflex
  8. Bad Oral Habits
  9. Falling Baby Teeth


Genetic Factors

Inherited traits can play a significant role. Variations in tooth size, jawbone structure, or the size and shape of teeth can lead to gaps between the front teeth.

Natural Growth

Sometimes the gap between the front teeth is the result of the normal development of children. It is very common between the age group of 6-8 years. But this gap disappears in most cases with the formation of upper canine teeth.

Abnormal Position, Size and Shape of Teeth

If the shape, size and position of your teeth are abnormal, the possibility of diastema increases. These teeth cannot receive the necessary pressure and support from each other to prevent them from separating.

Missing Teeth

The most common occurrence is the loss of teeth around the front teeth in the upper jaw. This type of upper lateral incisor teeth is also called. This situation leads to front tooth spacing.

Oversized Labial Frenum

The labial frenum is a tissue that covers the inside of the upper lip and the gum above the front teeth. If this tissue grows too much, it can lead to a diastema. The solution is frenectomy and its removal.


Gaps between your teeth can also be a result of periodontitis. It is a type of gum disease or infection that damages the tissues and bone of the tooth. As a result, your teeth become loose and create cracks.

Incorrect Swallowing Reflex

Correct swallowing reflexes make your tongue press against the roof of your mouth. On the other hand, when swallowing incorrectly, the tongue puts pressure on the front teeth. This constant pressure can eventually turn into a diastema in the front teeth.

Bad Oral Habits

Bad habits such as biting the lower lips and thumb or finger sucking can cause gap teeth in a child. Meanwhile, in an adult, it can be accompanied by tongue piercing.

Falling Baby Teeth

Gaps between the teeth may be caused by the fall of milk teeth, But this type of diastema is closed with the growth of permanent teeth.


Types of Diastema

Diastema can occur in different positions within the dental arch, leading to various types based on their location:

  1. Midline Diastema
  2. Lateral Diastema
  3. Interdental Diastema
  4. Maxillary Diastema
  5. Mandibular Diastema


Midline Diastema

This type occurs between the two upper front teeth (central incisors) and is one of the most common types.

Lateral Diastema

Gaps that appear between the upper lateral incisors or the upper canines.

Interdental Diastema

Spaces between any two adjacent teeth in the mouth, not just limited to the front teeth.

Maxillary Diastema

Gaps between teeth in the upper dental arch.

Mandibular Diastema

Spaces that occur between teeth in the lower dental arch.


Symptoms of diastema

The most obvious symptom in this condition is the distance between the teeth. Apart from that, you may also notice any of the following symptoms:


Cultural Perceptions of Anterior Diastema

Anterior diastema has different cultural implications across various societies:

  • Historical Significance
  • Modern Interpretations


Historical Significance

In some cultures, anterior diastema has been historically celebrated as a symbol of beauty or considered a mark of uniqueness. Certain ancient cultures viewed the gap between the front teeth as a sign of good luck or fertility.

Modern Interpretations

Contemporary perspectives on anterior diastema vary widely. While some individuals embrace and celebrate their gap-toothed appearance as a distinctive trait, others may seek corrective treatments to attain a more conventional smile.


Treatments of Diastema

If the diastema is temporary due to the fall of the milk tooth, no treatment is needed. Also, if there is no risk to dental health, you do not need to treat it. However, you may only treat it for cosmetic reasons. If you wish to treat it, here are your possible options:

  1. Fixed Orthodontics
  2. Ceramic Veneers
  3. Invisalign
  4. Dental Implants
  5. Treatment of Gum Disease
  6. Dental Composite
  7. Surgery with Orthodontics


Fixed Orthodontics

Fixed orthodontic treatment for cleft teeth is very common. It treats diastema by pushing the teeth closer together. Even if there is only one gap to fill, you may need to wear a full set of orthodontic wires.

Ceramic Veneers

Dental laminates or ceramic veneers are a thin piece of ceramic material that is placed on the surface of your teeth, Custom made for each patient. In general, it is useful in the case of diastema caused by teeth with a short distance.


treatment Invisalign is known to correct misaligned teeth and diastemas. This treatment is ideal for all age groups. Invisalign or invisible orthodontics is a popular alternative to fixed orthodontics because they are virtually undetectable to others.

Dental Implants

If you are missing a tooth, you should be treated with a dental implant. This is a replacement for your teeth that is attached to your jawbone by placing a metal screw or fixture. An appliance is also attached to both sides of the tooth gap for support.

Treatment of Gum Disease

When you have a diastema due to gum disease, the dentist must first treat it. Otherwise, the spreading infection can lead to tooth loss. The treatment of gum disease includes removing dental plaque or dental scaling and removing the infection from the gums.

Dental Composite

Dental composite is useful for filling a dental gap that is caused by one or more smaller teeth. In this treatment, resin is applied to the surface of your tooth. And it hardens with the help of light rays.

Surgery with Orthodontics

If the diastema is caused by an abnormal frenum or dental cyst, you may need surgery along with orthodontics. Surgery removes excess tissue. Orthodontic treatment can only be done after surgery.



Anterior diastema, specifically the gap between the upper front teeth, embodies a blend of dental concerns, cultural significance, and individual perceptions. Understanding its causes and available treatments allows individuals to make informed decisions about addressing this particular aspect of their dental appearance. Furthermore, recognizing the diverse cultural perspectives surrounding anterior diastema contributes to a broader understanding of beauty standards and the appreciation of dental diversity across different societies. Whether celebrated as a unique characteristic or treated for aesthetic reasons, anterior diastema underscores the complex interplay between oral health, cultural values, and personal preferences within the realm of dentistry.

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