Baby teeth, also known as primary teeth, are supposed to fall out naturally and be replaced with permanent, adult teeth. However, if baby teeth fall out earlier than they are supposed to, then they cannot hold the place for permanent teeth which can cause them to develop crookedly. If your child has lost a baby tooth too soon because of injury or decay, then visit Lake City Way Dental Center for a dental space maintainer.
A space maintainer is an oral appliance that holds open the gap of a missing baby tooth. The most common type consists of a metal band that attaches to a neighboring tooth and surrounds the empty space to prevent other teeth from shifting into it, allowing the permanent tooth enough space for eruption. The most common types of dental space maintainers include a band-and-loop, lingual arch, and distal shoe appliance.
Your child’s space maintainer will care for their smile, but you must be sure that it is cared for as well. When this appliance is kept in good condition, it will do a better job at maintaining the empty space. Some steps to follow include:
- Brushing and flossing your teeth regularly
- Avoid tugging or playing with the maintainer
- Avoid chewing gum or sticky candy
- Visit the dentist every six months
Call our dentist today if you would like to learn more about the benefits of a dental space maintainer.