Premature Tooth Loss

Perhaps one of the greatest milestones for babies and toddlers is when primary teeth begin to emerge. Without question, baby teeth reshape smiles, while allowing children to eat their first solid foods. Most importantly, however, these teeth serve as placeholders for permanent teeth to erupt. Colgate reports that when children experience premature tooth loss, dentists may suggest space maintainers to support a child’s mouth until permanent teeth come in.

As children develop an awareness of their bodies and physical surroundings, there are a number of ways in which they can lose primary teeth. For instance, they may fall or sustain an injury when playing too roughly with a sibling. In turn, sports or other activities may result in trauma that loosens or knocks out their tooth. Even so, some children develop early tooth decay or severe oral infections that result in tooth loss. Whatever the case, when primary teeth are lost too early, adjacent teeth are subject to become loose. In addition, they may shift, turn or move into the space once occupied by the primary tooth. Thus, to prevent this from happening, and to ensure permanent teeth emerge in the right place, space maintainers are a suitable solution.

Removable And Fixed Space Maintainers

Removable space maintainers are comprised of acrylic, and include artificial teeth as placeholders. Because this type of space maintainer requires daily removal and cleaning, it is most appropriate for older children. Surprising to some, when children are missing several teeth, a partial (removable) denture is considered a viable option.

On the other hand, for a younger child that has lost a back tooth or molar, for instance, a fixed space maintainer is usually the best choice. Depending on the location and the number of teeth lost, this type of space maintainer can be fixed on one or both sides. A band-and-loop device, lingual holding arch, trans-palatal arch, and distal shoe appliance are a few types of fixed space maintainers.

Every Child Deserves Access To Quality Dental Care

At Vital Smiles, your child’s oral health is not just important—it is vitally important! That’s why our team is committed to helping children of all ages and backgrounds have access to quality dental care as early as possible. By doing so, we help establish healthy habits and preventative dentistry that enhances their oral health and development. To schedule an appointment for your child, call us today!

Posted on behalf of Vital Smiles

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