Dental Space Maintainers
Your child’s primary teeth are important, not only for the function of eating an increasingly wide range of healthy foods as they grow, but also to provide guidance for permanent teeth once their baby teeth naturally fall out.
Occlusion, or how your teeth come together, can determine the health and comfort of your child’s permanent teeth and jaw. Malocclusion, having a bite that does not come together correctly, can cause problems such as pain, sensitivity, temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJD), and orthodontic complications requiring treatment.
Primary Tooth Preservation
At Bitesize Pediatric Dentistry, we strive to save baby teeth in the event of an accident or decay. Sometimes, however, premature tooth loss is unavoidable. Whether your child loses a tooth due to an accident or their baby tooth never grew in as expected, saving space for permanent teeth is important.
Removable Dental Space Maintainers
Depending on your child’s unique situation, a removable space maintainer may provide a solution to occlusal stability. Much like a dental retainer, removable space maintainers fit into the mouth and must be worn for the majority of the day. Because they are removable, kids can take them out to eat and practice daily oral hygiene. Removable space maintainers can be at risk for being misplaced, so keeping close track of them is important!
Fixed Dental Space Maintainers
Fixed dental space maintainers generally use adjacent teeth as an anchor to hold a crown (an artificial tooth) in place. We can attach the crown using band and wire attachments, or we can attach tooth brackets to hold them in place. Either way, regular dental appointments are essential to avoid gum tissue overgrowth and decay. We will monitor your child’s fixed space maintainer to ensure proper function and continued oral health.
Are Dental Space Maintainers Necessary?
When tooth loss occurs, remaining teeth naturally shift and move toward the gap. This can mean that not enough room exists for the growth of your child’s permanent teeth, creating overlapping, tipping, and tilting. Once permanent teeth exist, the only way to move them is using orthodontics. Allowing teeth to shift creates complex malocclusion cases and could require lengthy and expensive treatment. A space maintainer may remove significant amounts of time from orthodontic treatment or could potentially help avoid it altogether.
Our dentists, Dr. Raf and Dr. Rupin, can share your child’s options with you so that you feel informed to make a good decision regarding their oral health. We develop a good rapport with both parents and kids in our practice and will support the decisions you make regarding your child’s oral health.
Contact Bitesize Pediatric Dentistry to Schedule
Our Brooklyn, NY pediatric dental office, located in the Williamsburg neighborhood, currently welcomes new patients and looks forward to partnering with you to create a healthy, happy smile for the children in your life! We work closely with the pediatricians in our area to provide exceptional care to the smallest members of our community.