What Are the Benefits of Space Maintainers?
At Complete Family Dentistry in Wellsboro, PA, our expert team is proud to offer various treatment options to help families with their dental needs. Sometimes, younger children may need a custom appliance to maintain a space within the arch until a permanent tooth comes in. If a child loses a baby tooth or needs to have one extracted before the adult tooth comes in, we may place a specialized appliance called a space maintainer. Teeth support one another to help hold their position within the jaw. If a tooth is missing, it may drift into the open area without anything to stop it. Later on, this could affect your child’s bite alignment and function. Please schedule an appointment at Complete Family Dentistry to learn more about a space maintainer for your child.
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Best Candidates for Space Maintainers
Space maintainers work well for children who have a mix of baby teeth and adult teeth. They help ensure good bite alignment and that new teeth erupt in a healthy and functional way. Additionally, teenagers who no longer have baby teeth but still need their adult teeth to grow in may benefit from this type of appliance. A child can lose their tooth prematurely because of extraction, natural exfoliation, or an underlying cause, like damage, a cavity, or abscess. No matter the reason, we may need to place a space maintainer to keep permanent teeth from moving into the spaces.
What Is the Treatment Process?
To make it more convenient for you, we can create space maintainers in our on-site lab. We customize the appliance to meet the needs of your child, and we make it from smooth metal wire or plastic. During the consultation, one of our team members will assess your child’s oral health, take impressions, and create a detailed treatment plan. Once we have the appliance ready, we will schedule a consultation to place the appliance. Often, we use fixed space maintainers, which bond directly to the upper or lower arch. Children may also use removable appliances that fit comfortably and use the surrounding teeth for support.
Caring for Space Maintainers
Our group can provide you and your child with detailed instructions on caring for the space maintainer properly. Because your child’s mouth is still in a critical stage of development and improves their overall oral health, you may need to help them with brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash. Depending on your child’s situation, the timeframe will vary for each person. At their biannual cleanings and yearly exams, we will assess your child’s space maintainer and determine when they need it removed.
Preserve Your Child's Smile
To protect your child’s oral health, space maintainers can help permanent teeth grow in properly. If your child needs an extraction or loses a tooth before their adult tooth has erupted, a space maintainer will reduce the chance of the other permanent teeth from moving out of place. Please schedule an appointment at Complete Family Dentistry in Wellsboro, PA to learn more about this innovative procedure, and help protect your child’s smile.