There are many different cosmetic and oral health issues that can occur with our smiles. Black triangles are an obvious one that you may find yourself noticing when you look in the mirror. But what causes black triangles, and how can they be treated? Are they detrimental to your oral health? Our Plano, TX dentist office has answers.
What Are Black Triangles?
Black triangles form in between your teeth at the gum line. Their more technical name is “open gingival embrasures”. They occur when your gum tissue doesn’t completely fill the space between your teeth. It’s normal for us to have the occasional gap in these areas. However, if you’re noticing new gaps or ones that are getting bigger, that’s cause for some concern.
What Causes Black Triangles?
There are many different causes for black triangles. Each specific case is different. At our office, Dr. Mark Sowell will specifically work with you to determine the cause of your black triangles. Determining the direct cause of the problem helps us to plan the best course of treatment for your unique smile.
Commonly, the size and shape of your teeth can cause black triangles. If your teeth are smaller at the top than they are at the biting surface, this causes triangles to appear. In this form, they’re naturally occurring and aren’t anything you need to worry about.
If you notice new black triangles, it’s a sign that you need some sort of treatment. Gum disease is one of the most common causes. When you have untreated gum disease, your gums start to recede. Your gums stop filling the area between your teeth, and black triangles appear.
Severe gum disease also leads to bone loss. If the bone underneath your gums is deteriorating, your gums go with it. Talk to your dentist about your full medical history. Conditions like osteoporosis can also contribute to this occurring.
You can brush your teeth too aggressively. It’s possible. It can also cause your gums to recede. Using a toothbrush with bristles that are too firm can contribute as well. Orthodontic treatment is designed to shift your teeth into the ideal alignment. But these shifts can also contribute to black triangles.
How Do I Treat Black Triangles?
For starters, brush and floss your teeth more carefully. You may be able to fix the black triangles by being more gentle. The next step is to visit your dentist and get checked out for gum disease. It’s crucial to catch gum disease early. Your healing gums can refill the empty area once your mouth is healthy.
Dental bonding or veneers can eliminate these triangles, too. Bonding material is malleable and can be applied to fill the gaps between your teeth. Veneers are shaped to be custom to your smile, meaning they can be shaped to close those teeth gaps. These options change the appearance of your smile.
In severe cases, your dentist may recommend gum grafting surgery. Bone grafting is also a possibility if you have enough bone loss. These surgeries take tissue and bone from other areas to supplement those in your mouth where the recession has occurred.
Schedule an Appointment
Make sure your gum and bone tissue is in tip-top shape. Call us or schedule an appointment online.