3 Types of Dental Space Maintainers

Most children have a full set of milk teeth by the time they turn three. These teeth serve as placeholders for permanent teeth, which start erupting at six years of age. Children may lose their milk teeth prematurely from trauma, cavities, or some e other conditions.

In premature tooth loss, a dentist may suggest an orthodontic treatment to support your child’s mouth while waiting for the permanent teeth to fill the gap. The most common type of treatment recommended by orthodontists in Canton is the use of space maintainers. Partial space maintainers work well for older kids who can detach and clean them. Younger children and kids who have a missing back tooth must use fixed appliances.

That said, here are the categories of fixed space maintainers:

Band-And-Loop Maintainers

These devices comprise of a stainless steel wire held in place using orthodontic bands. The bands allow for permanent teeth eruption without blocking their path. They are suitable when one or more teeth in the same dental arch or primary molars are lost. But band-and-loop maintainers are tricky to adjust.

Trans-Palatal Arch

This arch is made of two metal bands linked by a wire. A trans-palatal arch is suitable for bilateral loss of maxillary molars. It is easy to clean, but may not avert mesial tipping of the teeth, which can lead to crooked angles of permanent teeth.

Lower Lingual Arch

This space maintainer is ideal if your child is missing one or more milk teeth molars on both sides of a dental arch. It is used when the first permanent molars have erupted to guide eruption of the other molars. A metal band is tied to the permanent molars, and a wire fused onto the band. The wire is then attached to your baby’s front teeth.

Space maintainers are normally made of acrylic and are custom-made for each child. They allow permanent teeth to grow with proper contact and alignment. Talk to your dentist to learn more about the options.