What Are the Benefits of Space Maintainers?
Our skilled general dentists are pleased to offer a selection of treatment options to help children enjoy healthy smiles as they grow. When a baby tooth is lost or needs to be extracted early than usual, a space maintainer may be recommended to keep this area open until the permanent tooth is ready to erupt. Space maintainers are custom orthodontic appliances that attach to the upper or lower arch to help hold the teeth in place for a certain period of time. If a tooth is lost too soon, the surrounding teeth may shift into the open space, preventing proper tooth eruption and changing how the teeth fit together. This situation might also affect the child's oral function and lead to future dental health concerns. For more information about a space maintainer for your son or daughter, please contact Byers Station Dental in Chester Springs, PA.
Who Is a Candidate for a Space Maintainer?
Children who are in the mixed phase of dentition, or those who have both baby and permanent teeth at the same time, may be candidates for space maintainers. Teenagers who are still waiting for a few permanent teeth to erupt, yet have already lost their baby teeth, may also benefit from this type of device. Baby teeth can be lost prematurely for a number of reasons. These may include the natural exfoliation process or the need for tooth extraction due to damage, severe decay, or a tooth abscess. When a tooth is lost and x-rays show that the underlying permanent may not be ready to erupt, our dentists may suggest placing a space maintainer to prevent surrounding teeth from moving into the area and disrupting the eruption process.
What Is the Treatment Process?
Space maintainers from Byers Station Dental may be fabricated as fixed or removable orthodontic appliances. Our dentists will help you determine the ideal type of appliance for your son's or daughter's needs. Impressions of your child's mouth will then be taken and sent to an orthodontics lab where the space maintainer will be made of plastic, smooth metal wire, or a combination of materials. When the device arrives in our Chester Springs, PA office, we will have you bring your child in to have it fitted. Removable appliances sit securely over the upper or lower arch and use surrounding teeth to remain in place while fixed space maintainers are bonded directly to the top or bottom teeth.
Caring for Space Maintainers
Once the space maintainer is in place, our team will provide you and your child with instructions on how to take care of the appliance each day. Depending on the age of your child, we might recommend that you assist them with brushing and flossing to make certain they maintain good oral hygiene while the appliance is in place. The length of time a space maintainer should be worn will depend upon individual needs. However, our dentists may provide you with an estimated timeframe for your child's treatment. We will monitor your child's tooth eruption during their routine visits at Byers Station Dental and inform you of when the device can be removed.
Does Insurance Cover Orthodontic Appliances?
If you carry dental insurance for your child, our business team will review the policy and let you know if any portion might be covered. Byers Station Dental is an in-network provider for several dental insurance plans. To help make covering any out-of-pocket costs more convenient for your family, we also accept a variety of payment options.
Preserve Oral Health With a Space Maintainer
Space maintainers are orthodontic devices commonly recommended to help preserve a child's oral health and function during tooth eruption. At Byers Station Dental, we offer custom space maintainers to hold open spaces left by the premature loss of baby teeth until the adult teeth are ready to emerge. Get in touch with our Chester Springs, PA team for more on how these orthodontic appliances might help preserve your child's oral health and smile.