A unilateral space maintainer is shown on a mouth model.

Space maintainer

A space maintainer is a great orthodontic appliance for guiding the growth of permanent teeth in a child’s new smile!

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A space maintainer is a custom-made dental device using acrylic or metal material. This appliance can either be removable or cemented in a child’s mouth. The primary purpose of a space maintainer is to keep space between children’s teeth open after premature baby tooth loss, allowing for easier and guided permanent tooth eruption. If the gap from the lost baby tooth is not maintained, there is a possibility that the teeth may shift into the open space and orthodontic procedures will be required. Space can be held for a single tooth or multiple teeth. 

There are different types of space maintainers.

Removable space maintainers are one kind and usually made of acrylic. In some cases, an artificial tooth is used to fill a gap that must remain open for the unerupted tooth. As the name implies, these space maintainers are removable. Removable retainers can also be used as a removable space maintainer.

The other kind of space maintainers are fixed. Unlike removable ones, these space maintainers are cemented to the teeth to stay in place. Yang Orthodontics offers 3 different kinds:

  • Unilateral space maintainer – A metal band wraps around the tooth and is connected to a metal loop that holds the space intact.
  • Crown and loop space maintainer – Uses an actual dental crown to cover the tooth and is attached to a metal loop. The metal loop ensures that there is a space for the erupting tooth.
  • Lingual space maintainer – Generally used for more than one missing tooth. It is usually bilateral and can be cemented to molar teeth. A wire connects it on the inside of the lower front teeth.

Your child deserves the best orthodontic care. Yang Orthodontics is here to help guide them through their transition to permanent teeth.

If you would like to see if a space maintainer is right for your child, you can schedule a free consultation appointment by giving us a call or texting us at 215-757-0864. You can also schedule online by clicking here.

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