Everything You Need to Know About Dental Space Maintainers

You’ve undoubtedly heard of a dental space maintainer or been told that a tooth spacer is available for your youngster. Because this unusual dental care accessory is one of the least known,  it would be a good idea to address some critical questions about it. Let’s look at what a dental space maintainer accomplishes, why it’s necessary, and other frequently asked topics.

Losing a baby tooth too soon might lead to long-term dental health issues for a kid. Fortunately, space maintainers are sure to assist children in keeping the area formerly held by a baby tooth open so that a permanent tooth may properly grow. A kid tooth spacer ensures that existing teeth are correctly aligned even when new ones sprout, and they may help eliminate the need for braces in the future, not to mention pain and suffering.

Space keepers come in a variety of shapes and sizes

A space maintainer is a device that keeps the gap left by a baby tooth open until your child’s adult tooth emerges. Metal or acrylic are the most common materials and may be fixed or detachable. Because it keeps the space free for the developing tooth, a space maintainer is sometimes designed like a tooth.

Fixed space maintainers come in a variety of shapes and sizes:

  • Unilateral: For a single tooth, this kind is employed. For security, one side wraps over the side of the tooth, and there’s a metal loop to keep the room in the mouth.
  • Distal shoe: This one is for a non-erupted permanent adult molar. It’s a touch more tricky since one end must sometimes be placed into the gum line to prevent the gap from closing.
  • Lingual: This is employed when a youngster has lost multiple teeth. The gadget’s sides will connect to the molars on both sides, which may be bilateral.
  • Crown and loop: This is exactly what it sounds like – a crown that covers the tooth and a loop that sits next to it to keep the area open.

Timeline for teeth in children

  • Around three years old, your kid should have most of their baby teeth.
  • Around six years old, your child’s teeth should start to fall out, which may continue until around age 12.
  • Teeth usually fall out in the sequence in which they developed.
  • Whether your child’s baby teeth start to fall out early, see Childrens Dentist Indianapolis IN to see if a space maintainer device is necessary.

How do space maintainers appear and feel?

Acrylic or metal space maintainers are custom-made. They resemble a retainer worn after orthodontic treatment. Rubber bands or metal springs are used in some. They may be permanently attached or easily removed. Childrens Dentist Indianapolis IN or orthodontist will propose the best kind for them.

If the missing tooth or teeth are at the front of the mouth, a space maintainer device with a fake tooth or teeth may be constructed to bridge the gap(s). Consult Pediatric Dentistry Indianapolis IN about your alternatives.

The benefits of having a space maintainer

Permanent teeth usually sprout quickly after a child’s baby teeth fall out. These emerging adult teeth guarantee that all teeth along the jawline are in the proper location. If your child’s teeth do not erupt when they should, it is possible that they will be in an unfavourable position.

Consult Kids Dentist Indianapolis IN to see whether your kid is a good candidate for a space maintainer. If your kid has lost teeth prematurely due to unforeseen circumstances, you should schedule an appointment with a Pediatric Dentist Indianapolis IN as soon as possible. If periodontal problems are not addressed, your kid may develop them. The youngster will need braces to correct the adult teeth that have finally emerged.

Wearing a space maintainer

It may take a few days for your youngster to adjust to their new addition. If your kid has discomfort as a result of their space maintainer, contact Children Dental Indianapolis IN right away since it might be an indication of something more serious. Your dentist will train you to properly care about your child’s teeth and space maintainer before you leave the clinic. This depends on the kind of maintainer the kid has and whether it is fixed or removable.

Is it harmful to use a spacer?

Because spacers aren’t designed to displace or shift teeth, they normally cause minimal discomfort. They are usually immediately accepted by children.

When should a spacer be left in the mouth?

Adult teeth may force the spacer out. Therefore, space maintainers can stay in the mouth for a long time. Removing spacers before an adult tooth forces them out is also possible. When the adult tooth begins to grow, metal spring-type spacers must be removed. Incoming permanent teeth drive acrylic spacers out on their own.

The maintenance of the maintainers

To keep the space maintainer in good form and avoid decay in the teeth around the maintainer, your kid must follow strict oral hygiene practices.

You should also prevent your toddler from pushing their fingers on the space maintainer or playing with it too much with their tongue. Even the tiniest alteration in its shape might have disastrous consequences. Keep your child’s hands out of their mouth as much as possible to protect the space maintainer.

Hard or sticky foods, such as caramel, hard candy, or gum, should be avoided by children with space maintainers. These sticky foods may get stuck in the device in your child’s mouth, resulting in tooth rot. You should see Pediatric Dentist Indianapolis IN frequently to check for movement or pain in your child’s mouth.


If your child’s primary teeth begin to fall out sooner than anticipated, the essential thing to do is see Kids Dentist Indianapolis IN. A dental space maintainer may be beneficial to your child. It is preferable to err on caution rather than take chances. If your kid needs a spacer but is never fitted for one, he or she may require braces after all the adult teeth have emerged.