A space maintainer is a small dental appliance that holds the space of one or more missing baby teeth open until the permanent teeth grow in.
A space maintainer is typically used when a baby tooth has been removed or has fallen out prematurely.
Are there different types of space maintainers?
Yes, there are different types of space maintainers available.
Space maintainers can either be non-removable (fixed into place) or removable. Space maintainers can be constructed using metal, acrylic, or a combination of metal and acrylic.
One of the most common space maintainer designs is a simple metallic band with an attached wire, which is used adhered onto the adjoining tooth.
Does my child need a space maintainer?
If your child has prematurely lost a tooth, our attentive dental team will advise you if a space maintainer is necessary.
What is the procedure for inserting a fixed space maintainer?
Inserting a fixed space maintainer is a two-step process, which is performed over the course of two appointments.
During the first appointment, impressions will be taken of your child’s teeth, which will be used to create the custom-made space maintainer.
During the second appointment, our caring team will attach the space maintainer to your child’s teeth and make any necessary adjustments to ensure it is comfortable for your child. Following this appointment, your child can eat and drink normally.
What is the procedure for inserting a removable space maintainer?
If your child’s space maintainer is removable, there will be an appointment to take an impression.
Once the appliance has been made, a second appointment will be required to allow us to fit and in some cases, adjust the space maintainer for fit and comfort. The removable space maintainers can be removed from the mouth for brief periods of time to eat and drink.
It is important to wear the space maintainer most of the time for optimal benefit. You should remind your child to take good care of their custom-made space maintainer, as it is a very small appliance and therefore easily misplaced or lost.
How will I know when the space maintainer needs to be removed?
While your child is wearing a space maintainer, it is important to bring your child in for regular examinations.
At each appointment, our experienced dental team will check the space maintainer. Space maintainers must be removed at the correct time so they don’t interfere with the arrival of the permanent tooth.