Types

There are basically two types of space maintainers: fixed and removable.

Fixed Space Maintainers

  • Unilateral space maintainers are fitted on just one side and usually replace just one tooth. It can be constructed in a band-and-loop or a crown-and-loop type. It can also be a distal-shoe type that is inserted under the gums. This latter type of maintainer is used when a child loses the baby tooth and the 6-year molar has not emerged.
  • Bilateral space maintainers are normally cemented with bands on back teeth on both sides connected by a wire just behind the lower incisors.

Removable space maintainers are similar in construction to orthodontic retainers and can be fitted alone by the wearer. This type of space maintainer works better in older children because it requires closely following directions on care and maintenance.

Custom-made and -fitted Just like braces, retainers, dentures and other dental appliance space maintainers are custom-made and fitted by a dentist or orthodontist to the patient. In making a fixed space maintainer, a metal band is placed around one of the teeth next to the space, and impressions are made. This allows the dental technician to make a copy of the teeth to use in making the space maintainer. The band is also removed and sent to the dental laboratory with the impressions. The lab creates the space maintainer and sends it back to the child’s dentist. The dentist cements it into place.

For a removable space maintainer, the dentist first makes impressions and then sends them to a lab, which makes the appliance.

Now you can kiss your overbite or underbite goodbye. Have an attractive smile that’s truly remarkable from an expert’s perspective. Call us in Wilbraham today at (413) 596-9657 or use our online Request an Appointment form. Our patients come to us from the Pioneer Valley (Hampden County, MA) towns of Hampden, Ludlow, Monson, Palmer, Springfield, Wilbraham and East Longmeadow, Massachusetts.