What is a Space Maintainer?
Every tooth has a designated space and size in the mouth and baby teeth preserve this space. If however, the baby tooth is lost early through accident or decay, a ‘space maintainer’ is fixed in the mouth to hold the space and prevent adjacent teeth drifting into it.
Here are a few images to help you understand the work. Some maintainers are more complex than others.
Note the deciduous molar ‘holds the permanent successor between its roots, ensuring its position.
A passive space maintainer after multiple extractions. Note erupting permanent teeth.
A passive single tooth space maintainer.
An active (spring loaded) space maintainer to regain lost space. Otherwise the permanent tooth will be locked in.
Space maintainers to HOLD space for permanent teeth to erupt in the years ahead.
At Caring 4 Smiles, we are vigilant and make every attempt to prevent the extraction of children’s teeth. We often get young children who have already had teeth out.
We explain through photos, the consequences of such occurrences and then place Space maintainers in the child’s mouth.
Diet and parental supervision plays a pivotal role in children’s Oral Health. The next most important role is that of the Preventive Dentist. This partnership, if established early on in a child’s life, will ensure that extensive dental work is not necessary later on.