By: J. Shahangian, DDS, MS- San Diego Board Certified Pediatric Dentist
Space maintainers are places where your child’s tooth has fallen out. There are many reasons for tooth loss including injury and decay. This vacancy can cause a shift in teeth alignment because a new erupting tooth can fill in an incorrect vacant space. When the new tooth grows in, there will not be any space for tooth. This causes crooked teeth which can result in speech impediments and difficulty chewing.
The purpose of the space maintainer is to block off the space of the lost tooth until the new permanent erupts. Space maintainers can be temporary attachable crowns that attach to one side of the empty space or bands. When the tooth erupts, the space maintainer is removed.
 http://www.sunnysidedentistryforchildren.com/library/2049/AllAboutBraces.html, accessed January 3, 2012