You are likely to have a lot of questions if your child requires a palatal expander in Cambridge OH as part of an orthodontic treatment plan. Some patients require this device to create additional space in the upper jaw.
Our orthodontist recommends this device for children because their upper jaw has not finished growing yet and is still pliable. Younger patients can start wearing a palatal expander as early as seven years old, which is sometimes several years before they start wearing braces. The device only works on patients whose upper jaw has not fully developed yet. We typically see results from the palatal expander within three months.
Types of Orthodontic Problems Treated by a Palatal Expander
An expander for the upper jaw can be a useful component of orthodontic care when used to treat one of several common issues. These include:
- Chewing difficulties
- Crooked teeth
- Crowded teeth
- Impacted teeth
- Misaligned bite due to a crossbite, open bite, overbite, or underbite
- Overlapping teeth
The purpose of widening the jaw is to provide additional space for teeth to move in response to pressure from braces. Palatal expanders also allow teeth’ top and bottom rows to fit together better.
How the Device Works
The term palate refers to the roof of the mouth. Your child’s palate has a suture running down the middle of it that divides it into two halves. Dr. Jared Dean will explain to both you and your child how to remove and insert the device during your child’s appointment in Cambridge or Zanesville, Ohio. If your child receives a non-removable device, our team will make sure that you understand how to adjust it at home if needed for improved comfort.
The palate expander applies gentle pressure to both sides of the palate. The pressure causes each half of the palate to grow slightly apart, providing more room for the teeth to move later. New bones develop in response to the palate widening, and these bones grow in any space created by the expansion of your child’s palate.
Treating Minor Discomfort
All devices used for orthodontic treatment have the potential to cause discomfort. If your child complains of mouth soreness during the first few days, you can provide an over-the-counter pain reliever like naproxen or ibuprofen. Discomfort may also occur after tightening.
Schedule an Orthodontic Consultation Today
Your child does not need to have all their permanent teeth yet for you to learn about orthodontic treatment. We invite you to schedule an initial consultation at your convenience.
Palate Expander: Uses, Types & Adjusting (clevelandclinic.org)