A pediatric dentistry clinic is a place that specializes in caring for the mouths of children, and pediatric dentists offer services that are just for kids. There are a lot of different services offered by pediatric dentists, and one of the things they offer is space maintainers. A space maintainer is something most adults will never need, and here are several important things you should understand about space maintainers for kids.
What is a space maintainer?
The first thing you should understand is what a space maintainer is, and it is basically a small device placed in a child's mouth to hold the space where a tooth is missing. When teeth are missing from a child's mouth, a space maintainer is strong enough to stop the other teeth from filling in this gap, and this is the purpose of a space maintainer. There are several different types of space maintainers that a pediatric dentist might use, including permanent ones and removable ones. A permanent one is cemented or glued in place, and will only come out when the tooth below it begins erupting. A removable one is more like a retainer, which means the child can take it out and put it back in as desired.
Why do dentists use these?
Dentists only recommend the use of space maintainers when teeth fall out before they should. If a tooth falls out before it was supposed to come out, there will not be a permanent tooth under it ready to erupt. Instead, it could be months or years before the permanent tooth comes in. Without a space maintainer, this gap could begin to shrink over time. If this happens, there would not be enough room for the tooth to come through when it finally erupts.
What situations cause kids to need these?
There are two main situations that cause children to lose teeth prematurely. The first is from trauma. If a child gets an injury to the mouth that causes a tooth to come loose when it should not have, it could cause the tooth to fall out years before it was ready to. Secondly, decay that consumes too much of a tooth's structure may cause the tooth to need to be extracted long before the child would have naturally lost the tooth.
If your child needs a space maintainer, you should schedule an appointment with a pediatric dentistry clinic so your child can get one. If you have questions about this or other types of pediatric dentistry services, contact a clinic in your city.Share