The process of aligning smiles starts before braces are put on. If your little one is in the pre-planning stages, your dentist may recommend space maintainers being placed. These are inserted in the gaps left after losing baby teeth early and help their permanent set of teeth come in correctly and can reduce the need for braces. Today, your Shirley Orthodontics and Pediatrics in New York is here to explain how this works and when your child may need it.
What Causes Premature Tooth Loss
It’s a normal part of childhood to grow and lose the first set of teeth. In most cases, this begins as the permanent ones begin to come in. The first set of dentitions that we grow allows us to transition into eating solid food and begin speaking. We begin to lose this set around six years old as we make room for our adult teeth.
However, sometimes the deciduous teeth can fall out before the new set is ready. This may be due to a variety of reasons, from health complications to injury. If your little one loses a deciduous tooth too soon, the new structure can potentially grow crooked or incorrect.
How Space Maintainers Help
If your child loses a tooth early, it’s important to guide the next set into the proper place. Space maintainers are used to aid in the process by acting as a placeholder. There are several kinds of spacers that can be used depending on your little one’s needs.
Placing this maintainer is a simple process. First, the metal wire is wrapped around the tooth, where a loop will hold it in place. The retainer will be cemented in place, so you can be at ease knowing it will not fall out when your child chews or speaks. This will be kept until the adult tooth begins growing. At this point, the dentist will remove the appliance for the new structure to grow properly.
Once your child has grown in their permanent teeth, they will be ready for orthodontics if necessary. It is important that your little one has a healthy smile with enough room for adjusting their teeth. Space maintainers and other treatments, such as retainers or jaw correction, are determined during phase one and will help reduce the time needed to wear braces. This means that your little one can have a straight smile sooner.
Does Your Child Need A Space Maintainer?
If you believe your little one will benefit from this tool, talk to their dentist today. To schedule an appointment, please call Shirley Orthodontics & Pediatric Dentistry in Shirley, NY, at 631-399-1600. We proudly serve all nearby areas as well.