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What are space maintainers?

Losing baby teeth too early can cause multiple dental problems, including overcrowding, impacted teeth (teeth that are unable to grow in because they’re in the wrong position), and bite problems.

Space maintainers are dental appliances that ensure there’s sufficient space for your child’s permanent teeth to grow in. The space maintainer looks similar to a dental bridge, but it contains metal space holders instead of artificial teeth. We custom create your child’s space maintainer to fit their mouth.

What are the types of space maintainers?

There are several types of space maintainers that we use:

Fixed space maintainers

Fixed space maintainers are a type of semi-permanent dental appliance. We affix the device to your child’s mouth, where it remains in place until their permanent teeth grow in. Crown and loop space maintainers place a crown over one of your child’s teeth and use a wire loop to create the space where they’re missing a tooth. Unilateral space maintainers wrap a wire around your child’s tooth and use a wire loop to hold space at the sight of their missing tooth. Distal shoe space maintainers are used for holding space for permanent molars to come in. We insert this device into your child’s gum line to prevent their other teeth from taking the permanent molar’s spot. Lingual space maintainers use wire space holders and crowns to provide spacing for several missing teeth.

Removable space maintainers

Removable space maintainers are ideal when your child’s permanent teeth are nearly ready to grow in. These devices can be removed, making it easier for your child to brush and floss their teeth. However, removable space maintainers aren’t as effective at creating and holding space in your child’s mouth.

What are the benefits?

Space maintainers have several benefits for your child’s oral health:

Keeps your child’s teeth in their correct positions

When your child loses their baby teeth, the surrounding teeth naturally shift towards the gap left by the missing tooth. If this happens before their permanent teeth have developed, your child may experience issues that affect their long-term dental health. Space maintainers keep your child’s teeth in their correct positions, preventing shifting that leads to overcrowding.

Reduces the need for other orthodontic treatments

We recommend using preventive treatments when possible. Space maintainers prevent your child’s teeth from shifting and causing dental problems that require more intensive orthodontic treatments.

Minimal discomfort for your child

While your child may find a space maintainer a little uncomfortable at first, they shouldn’t feel any pain or significant discomfort. The personalized process used to manufacture a space maintainer ensures that it’s as comfortable as possible while continuing to offer effective treatment.

Space Maintainers in Queens & Brooklyn, NY - Downtown Braces & Children's Dentistry

Space Maintainers, Queens & Brooklyn, New York


Space maintainers are an orthodontic tool that preserves space in your child’s mouth when they prematurely lose their baby teeth.

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