Space Maintainers

Space Maintainers

You may not think placing braces is a complex process.  The doctor just cements brackets in place before adding wires, right?  In fact, there’s far more to it.

Braces are designed to fulfill a number of purposes, including correcting teeth and jaw misalignment.  When teeth are crooked or crowded, placing the hardware into the correct position can be difficult.  This is especially true of the metal bands secured around the back molars that act as anchors when moving teeth.

In some cases, there just isn’t enough space between teeth to get the bands in place.  This is when dental space maintainers, or spacers, enter the picture.  What are space maintainers for teeth, and how do they help to prepare for the installation of braces?

What are Dental Space Maintainers?

Orthodontic devices are generally made of metal or rubber, but they are different from the elastic bands used for adjustment once your braces are in place.  When teeth are determined to be too close together to place the metal bands, spacer maintainers are used to create a slight gap between the teeth.  This gap provides the necessary spacing to place the metal band.

Your teeth are designed to fit closely together for function (chewing) and to minimize cavity formation between teeth.  Dental space maintainers are often placed several days before a patient is scheduled to receive braces, allowing time for back teeth to shift slightly apart. This small gap makes room for metal bands to be positioned around back molars.

It’s not unusual to feel a small amount of discomfort when wearing spacers since they shift the teeth.  Ibuprofen usually does the trick to reduce any discomfort.

 The Benefits of Space Maintainers for Teeth

Whether your teeth are crowded, crooked, or your bite is misaligned, Fioritto Family Dental will ensure your comfort is a top priority when your braces are placed.

When spacers are placed, we know by the time you arrive for your braces several days later, your molars will have had sufficient time to shift to allow the metal bands to be positioned quickly and easily.  The simple spacing procedure can reduce the length of your appointment and minimize any potential discomfort as we place your braces.

Not every patient will need space maintainers, however it is common. To begin your journey to a straight and beautiful smile, contact Fioritto Family Dental at 440-951-5511 or online today to schedule an evaluation.