Space maintainers are orthodontic devices used in pediatric dentistry. The primary role of these devices is to prevent the misalignment of teeth, overcrowding, and other orthodontic conditions that can occur as a result of untimely baby tooth loss. It is a customized appliance that is fabricated from acrylic or metal material. It is either removable or can be cemented in a child's mouth. A space maintainer's work is to maintain the gap between two or more baby teeth allowing for the new, permanent tooth to erupt and occupy the space. If a child's tooth is lost in advance, space maintainers ensure that the other teeth do not occupy the space till the permanent teeth erupt. The loss of a tooth can be due to trauma, disease, overcrowding, or decay.
Space maintainers are also a vital alternative treatment for children as they can help reduce or avoid the need for future orthodontic work such as braces later on in your child's grown-up life. Not everybody who loses a baby tooth will need space maintainers. However, this can be decided by your dentist. Hence it is important to take the child for a regular check-up and cleaning visits to prevent decay and possible premature loss of baby teeth.
What is the procedure for placing a Space Maintainer?
Space maintainers are either fixed or removable. There are several types of space maintainers for different conditions and locations in the mouth. The kind of space maintainers required will have to be decided by the dentist based on the need. A space retainer procedure is simple and routine and can be concluded in one or two office visits, depending upon the kind of treatment necessary.
Once the space maintainer has been created or placed, it may take a few days for your child to get used to the appliance. The child should be monitored diligently to ensure that they are wearing it and should make certain that they follow a proper oral hygiene routine at home.
Once your child has gotten used to the space maintainer, your child will need to be monitored regularly by the dentist to ensure that the development and growth of the new tooth are occurring as planned and are following the path that the space maintainer has permitted. Once the adult teeth start growing correctly, the space maintainer can be detached.
What are the types of Space Maintainers?
- Fixed Space Maintainers:They are bonded onto the adjacent teeth and are available in different designs: One variety of space maintainers comprises a band that runs around a tooth and a wire loop that protrudes out from the band to hold the space. Another array consists of a loop secured to a stainless steel crown, which sits on an adjacent tooth. Fixed space maintainers are often favored for younger children because they are less easy to fiddle with, break, or misplaced.
- Removable Space Maintainers: These appliances resemble a retainer that is worn at the end of orthodontic procedures. It can have a false tooth mounted on it, primarily useful when the lost tooth is prominently noticeable in the mouth. The grown-up children can usually handle the responsibility of wearing this appliance and caring for it properly.
Call us at We C Kids Dental, Kids Dentist or schedule an online appointment to know more about Space Maintainer.