Caring for an Elderly Parent With Special Dental Needs

Caring for an Elderly Parent With Special Dental Needs

An Overview Of The Band And Loop Space Maintainer Procedure To Help Your Children Grow Healthy Teeth

Joe Lawrence

A child losing their baby teeth is often a considered to be a rite of passage for them as they get older and become a "bigger" kid, and most parents and children celebrate the moment. However, baby teeth can come out too early which can cause permanent teeth to come in crooked or at an angle. The space left by the baby tooth has to be held open for the permanent tooth to grow in normally. A dentist can insert a band and loop space maintainer into your child's mouth to keep the space open. If your child has lost a tooth before the permanent one is ready to come in and you are considering having a dentist use a band and loop space maintainer to keep the tooth slot open, here is an overview of how the procedure is done.

Band and Loop Appliance

A band and loop space maintainer is called an appliance and it is made specifically for your child's mouth. The dentist will make a mold of your child's teeth and use it to create a stainless steel band and loop appliance. The appliance comes in one piece. One-half of the appliance is made by creating a band that fits over an existing tooth and the other half is made into a loop that will press against the tooth on the other side of the gap. The loop is hollow so the permanent tooth has room to start growing into the gap when the time comes.

Inserting the Appliance

The dentist will normally put the appliance in place to make sure it fits correctly before applying dental cement. The dentist will make any adjustments to the appliance with hand tools if it doesn't fit right and reinsert into your child's mouth to check how it fits again. The dentist will cement the band side of the appliance onto an existing tooth once they are satisfied everything fits well.

The dentist will usually put some sterilized gauze between the cheek and gums to soak up any saliva in the mouth and help the tooth dry. The dentist will use a cement made out of either zinc phosphate or glass ionomers. Glass ionomer-based cement are gaining in popularity since they are easy to use and don't bother patients as much as zinc phosphate-based cement.

The cement is applied to the inside of the metal band part of the appliance. The band is pressed down over the top of the support tooth with the loop side falling down into the gap. Any cement that squeezes out over the top of the band is immediately wiped away. The cement usually sets within a few minutes and your child will be able to bite down.

After the procedure is completed, your dentist will want the child to return every few months so they can check the condition of the appliance and monitor when the new permanent tooth is getting set to grow in. The dentist, one like Kids Dental Tree, will remove the band and loop appliance once the permanent tooth starts to fill in the gap.


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Caring for an Elderly Parent With Special Dental Needs

Caring for an elderly parent tends to be tough enough without the added stress of dealing with dental implants or dentures. But, the prospect is not the end of the world—there are many things you can do to ensure that your parent's dental health is not compromised without having to spend a lot of personal time doing the care yourself. Between working with the right dentist, hiring a service provider for part time work, and giving your parent the tools he or she needs to care for his or her own dental health at home, you'll find that dental health for your loved one isn't so tough or time consuming after all. Hopefully you are able to get the support and information you need right here.