A space maintainer is an oral appliance used to keep a space open so that a permanent tooth can erupt in that space. If a tooth is lost too soon, it could cause nearby teeth to shift into the space and make it difficult for the permanent tooth to erupt in its proper spot. However, with a space maintainer, the neighboring teeth are unable to shift into that space, and your child’s permanent tooth will be able to erupt when the time comes.
If your child loses a baby tooth too early, a space maintainer may be necessary to prevent the other teeth from shifting into that space. This can prevent other orthodontic issues in the future. Before deciding on using a space maintainer, at Dental Care for Kids, the dentist will assess the situation and determine the best treatment option for your child.
The Benefits of Using a Space Maintainer
After your child loses a baby tooth, they can lose the space in the gums where the tooth once was, and the teeth on either side of the space can move into that space. This can lead to crooked or crowded teeth that must be corrected with braces or another orthodontic treatment. A space maintainer can be used to prevent this from happening and maintain the spacing between teeth. These appliances are made of metal and are cemented into the mouth to ensure your child cannot remove them. However, a space maintainer may not be necessary if your child is old enough to have several permanent teeth ready to erupt. Your dentist can help you determine the best treatment plan for your child.
How Does Space Maintainer Work?
A space maintainer is a custom-made appliance that protects the space left by a lost tooth from shifting or becoming occupied by a new tooth. It typically consists of a band cemented to surrounding teeth and an attached loop that hugs the neighboring tooth’s crown. In some cases, the wire extends into the gum line. The band is carefully adjusted to fit comfortably around your child’s tooth and the surrounding gum tissue. The wire should stay in constant contact with the opposite tooth for stability. An orthodontic adhesive can also be used to secure the band further.
Space maintainers are essential in pediatric dentistry to prevent future dental issues and ensure proper tooth alignment. They help maintain a healthy dental arch and facilitate the eruption of permanent teeth in their appropriate positions. If your child has experienced premature tooth loss or tooth extraction, visit Dental Care for Kids at 3235 N Towerbridge Way Suite #200, Meridian, ID 83646, or call (208) 888-7711.