Simply put: space maintainers hold space inside the mouth to allow for uncomplicated or uninhibited eruption of permanent teeth.
A child’s baby teeth are natural space maintainers; however, there are situations in which assistance may be needed to create or maintain space inside the mouth:
There are two main reasons that a child may need a tooth extraction: stubborn baby teeth and infection.
Sometimes the tooth fairy asks us to intervene by extracting a baby tooth in an effort to make way for permanent teeth. Common situations in which we would recommend an extraction include:
An extraction may also be necessary when a child has an infection in the tooth, but is not at the right age for a filling, crown, or nerve treatment. Particularly when the infected tooth is a baby tooth, it may make more sense to simply remove the tooth to make way for the permanent tooth.
While extractions are an intimidating idea for most children, you can be assured that our dentists and hygienists will be mindful of your child’s needs at every step. We’ll make sure your child understands the process of the procedure, and we’ll only proceed when his or she is comfortable.