In many cases an extraction will be necessary to remove a diseased tooth that cannot be saved with a dental restoration. If this happens before the permanent tooth is expected to erupt, the spacing of the primary and permanent teeth will become a problem. Generally, an extraction of a baby tooth will cause the permanent tooth next to it to drift into that space. This will prevent the unerupted permanent tooth that belongs in this space to fail to erupt or to erupt into a space that is out of position. When this happens, orthodontics are generally needed to correct the spacing problem.
To prevent space loss after an extraction, ‘SPACE MAINTAINERS’ are indicated. Examples are shown to the left and include single tooth space maintenance, and multiple (cross-arch) space maintainers. These appliances are necessary until the eruption of the permanent teeth fills the space that exists due to the extraction. When front teeth are lost prematurely, a parent may choose to make a ‘PEDO PARTIAL‘. This appliance is very esthetic and will allow your child to look and function normally until the front teeth erupt. If you live in San Diego, contact us with any questions you have regarding extraction and spacing!