How Does It Work?
Orthodontic expansion is accomplished by the use of what is known as a palatal expander. They are custom-made for your child and will be fitted in the rear of the mouth over a few of the top teeth. This device has two halves that are connected in the middle of the mouth with a screw. Every day the screw will need to be turned with a special key, which will activate the device to place pressure on the palatal bones, causing a gradual separation of the bones. To accomplish the desired results, it will be necessary to make one or two adjustments each day, and once those results are achieved, the appliance will be left in the mouth for about three more months to secure the expansion and allow new bone to grow.
The key adjustments may cause some soreness and the feeling of a bit of pressure, but that should subside after a few minutes. At times, eating and speaking may be affected until the patient adjusts fully to the expander.
When Might This Treatment Be Needed?
Orthodontic expansion may be needed to remedy the following issues:
1. Crowding – Permanent teeth lack sufficient space to fit inside the mouth
2.Is often identified prior to eruption of permanent teeth
3. Malocclusions like crossbite – This occurs when top back teeth bite inside of the lower teeth
4. Impacted Teeth – Teeth may be blocked by other teeth or coming in the wrong way
5. Impacted wisdom teeth is a common occurrence in teens
Can Adults Use Orthodontic Expanders?
The use of Orthodontic Expanders occurs infrequently in adults, but if it is needed, it is generally a more uncomfortable procedure than with young people. This is due to the fact that adult bone tissue and cartilage is harder in adults.
Whether for adults or children, the use of a palatal expander can be beneficial because, as the jaw is widened, it provides a superior visual appearance and can decrease time required for braces as well as the number of extraction that may be required.
At ( ) in Duluth, we are experienced in the area of orthodontic expansion and will treat you according to your unique needs. The process will be explained and discussed with you completely before any treatment is begun.