If your child knocked out a baby tooth before its time or due to baby bottle tooth decay, one of his or her adult teeth may erupt in the wrong places or angles. Then when other teeth are ready to erupt, they may not be able to do so because there is no longer any room. To prevent this occurrence, your orthodontist, Dr. Daniel Adams may suggest getting a space maintainer. This is an appliance that will hold open the space left by the tooth.
Space maintainers come in two forms: removable and fixed. The removable kind is made of acrylic and uses an artificial tooth to hold open the space. This tends to work better for an older child who is able to remove the appliance and clean it. A fixed maintainer is attached with dental cement to teeth close to the gap using bilateral appliances made of stainless steel wire. Depending on the placement of the lost tooth, there are various types of fixed space maintainers available. Ask Dr. Daniel Adams for more information.
It can take time for a child to adapt to wearing a device. You may want to pay extra attention to your child’s oral hygiene routine at this time, as the device can make it both more difficult and more important to clean the mouth.
If you have any questions about space maintainers, please call Full Smile Orthodontics in Carlsbad, California, at 760.804.0080 today!