Oral Surgery/Front teeth

Advertisement


Question
QUESTION: As long as I can remember my husband has had a gap in between his front teeth with a piece of tissue in between them. I assume it is the frenulum which is the tissue causing the gap. He has been to the dentist several times and they have never mentioned what it was so I was just curious.

http://i1209.photobucket.com/albums/cc393/kkingery83/B9CC7BC3-B945-4B0E-9145-F63

http://i1209.photobucket.com/albums/cc393/kkingery83/93F92C44-5BAA-409F-B3E0-05E

ANSWER: Kim -  your husband has a simple frenal attachment towards the palatal side of the ridge.  This attachment is what keeps that small space open and it does not allow it to close naturally.  The area does not look inflamed and can be left alone.  If the small, and I mean small, space bothers you or him, he can have a simple surgical procedure, called a frenectomy to allow the space to close.  

So it is up to you and him to decide.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: That is what I was assuming it was. Do is the tissue in between the teeth the actual frenulum of is it his gum tissue receding bc of how low the frenulum is attached? Can this get worse in time or does it always stay the same? The reason I am asking bc looking back at pics which there not close ups of his teeth it'd hard to tell if this has always been this way or just developed in the last few years. Thanks.

Answer
Kim -  The frenum attachment has been in its present position since his permanent teeth erupted.  The tissue is the distal aspect of the frenulum. It should stay the same, but just like anywhere in the mouth, if he does not meticulously keep the area clean, periodontal problems can develop.  With age, the space can open wider with normal activities.

Oral Surgery

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Joel S. Teig, DMD, Diplomate ABOMS, retired

Expertise

I am a board certified oral and maxillofacial surgeon available to answer questions related to tooth extractions, implant insertion, facial recontruction, facial and oral tumor removal, TMJ dysfunction and various successful treatments, including surgery if all else fails, and occlusal discrepancy requiring orthognathic or jaw surgery.

Experience

Board Certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon practicing for over 20 years. Assistant Clincal Professor at State University School of Dentistry.

Organizations
American Dental Association, American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

Education/Credentials
BA- University of Connecticut DMD-University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine Oral and Maxillofacial Surgical Residency - Roosevelt Hospital, NYC

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.