Are these IPR/filed spaces ever going to fill in and when?

Discussions about treatment with invisible braces that use clear aligners, such as Invisalign, OrthoClear, the Red White and Blue system, etc.

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Are these IPR/filed spaces ever going to fill in and when?

#1 Post by ChicagoJohn »

I'm on my 4th set of trays and so far my dentist has filed (IPR) 6 spaces between my teeth. 4 of the spaces were made on my front teeth on the top and I look a bit like a bum with these gaps between my teeth. They are noticeable. At least I think so. I've had to go in 4 times, once for each new tray and he's put one or two spaces in each time using a drill instead of a file to make them. So, six weeks into this thing and I'm still not seeing any closing of the gap in any of these spaces, even the ones that were made on the first day. I'm getting nervous that they won't ever close up. I would rather have crooked teeth than straight ones with gaps between them.

Has anyone else had IPR done and at what point did those spaces start to disappear? I'm getting nervous! Were your spaces made from IPR even noticeable at first? I think my dentist may have made mine too big. I'm supposed to go and have a 7th and final space made when I start my 7th trays and I'm considering telling him not to do it.

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#2 Post by newsazzysmile15 »


i've had IPR done on about 4gaps now, my dentist does it in blocks, so when I take home five trays he has done the IPR stated on each of those packs in one go, so the IPR is usually done before the teeth are expected to move to those positions if you follow? He always does it with this stuff that looks like floss though, bu is actually a file. The gaps are never obvious to look at, but they are there. I just get more food stuck and it's easier to floss there. With the retainers on it is impossible to know, it is probably the same for you, it's just because you know the gaps are there. I'm not sure any of them have close up yet either as I am 10weeks in and don't think my teeth have moved at all yet really, my bite even feels the same!!

Same goes for the visability of the retainers really....I always think that everyone must be able to see them, because I always can!

Good luck, i'm sure your dentist will provide you with then end result you are hoping for!

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#3 Post by ChicagoJohn »

Yeah he gave me 3 sets of trays to take home on my last visit so he did a lot of filing for those in advance I think. Actually, just this morning I did notice when flossing that one of the spaces up front felt a little tighter with the floss so maybe it's starting to close up a bit finally.

You're right about the gaps not showing when the retainers are on too. It seems to hide them.

I've heard of others getting their IPR done with a file or that floss type of stuff but my dentist just did it with the drill and I'm really hoping that he didn't take too much off by doing it that way.

No movement after 10 weeks? I don't notice movement that much yet by looking at my teeth everyday but I've been taking pictures at the end of each tray and when I look at those I can see some slight movement. I'm about 7 weeks in and my bite feels really off. Could be that your molars are moving first and that they're doing it at the same rate top and bottom so that you're bite doesn't feel any different. Good luck with things!

Phantom Muse
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#4 Post by Phantom Muse »

I haven't had IPR and don't expect to, but I now have a space between my two upper front teeth. It was opened up a few trays ago, and I think, based upon what needs to be done for the final result, it will take my remaining five trays to close up the space.

I am wearing my last lower tray, and now that the teeth are in alignment (YAY!), my arch looks different. I have upside down triangle-shaped teeth on my lowers, and there are definitely small gaps between them near the gum. However, as the days pass (I have worn this tray for 9 days), I am growing more used to it. In fact, I doubt anyone would ever notice this. I think - even though this may seem absurd - that I was a bit surprised by the fact that my teeth look so different now than before I started treatment!

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#5 Post by TinySmiley »

Good question, ChicagoJohn. :) I've had IPR done at the beginning of my treatment (tray #5) and I'm on aligner #16 and the gaps are still there. So, I don't know when they will begin to fill in. Luckily, they are not noticeable with the aligners on, but I hope the more straighter my teeth become, the more the gaps go away (i think that's the idea anyway! :wink: ).

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#6 Post by DrJasonKTam »

IPR space isn't always meant to be closed during the aligner for which the IPR is prescribed. There are various reasons for IPR other than simple crowding. Sometimes, space may not close up completely until the end of treatment. That would be the time to worry if there is still space :).
Dr. Jason Tam
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Steph in Sac
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#7 Post by Steph in Sac »

Good question ChicagoJohn! I have ceramic braces but asked a similar question on another forum and no one seemed to feel my worry. My ortho has used both, a file and a drill to IPR. I HATE the gaps and can only assume he knows what he's doing. I do see where two teeth are slightly overlapped and I assume the space is so those can move apart. My worry is that he has filed on both sides of one tooth--I hope it doesn't look skinnier than the matching tooth/teeth!!

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#8 Post by ChicagoJohn »

Nearing the end of my 4th set of aligners now and two of the gaps have suddenly closed up quite a bit! I guess that shows that it takes more than just the first week to really move the teeth to the shape of a new tray because the spaces did not fill in during the first week of tray #4 but they did near the end. I always thought that the second week was basically just for letting the teeth rest in their new position but apparently mine moved for the entire two weeks!

Thanks for all of the comments and advice :)

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Re: Are these IPR/filed spaces ever going to fill in and when?

#9 Post by Kayceerad »

Hello! I just left my 9 week appointment. (I'm on tray 5 right now). I am really bummed out because during my appointment they drilled/files a few gaps in my teeth- one of which is a large (to me) gap in between my front two teeth! It looks horrible and really hope it closes up in time!! I know it's still early for me to be worrying but I was wondering if yours ever closed up to your satisfaction??

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