You know that your child needs a plan of action to correct the alignment of his or her teeth. You have been told that an orthodontic expander is necessary. Before making any decisions about your child’s treatment plan, you want to know more about what is going to happen next. You want to understand exactly what your child can expect as the journey to straight teeth begins.
What is an Orthodontic Expander?
An orthodontic expander is an appliance that is meant to expand your child’s palate. It will be designed to be a custom fit that will fit over the back teeth to hold it securely in place. There is a screw in the middle of the device that connects the two halves. This screw is turned with a special key a small amount each day as instructed by our dental professional to gradually shift your child’s palate. Once you no longer need to tighten the screw, the expander will remain until the bone has grown to fill in the gap formed by the device. The process usually takes anywhere from three to six months.
Why Might Your Child Need an Orthodontic Expander?
When an orthodontic expander is used, it stretches the palate to make it wider. This is effective in giving your child’s mouth more space. It can make it easier to treat issues such as crowding, teeth that are impacted, and a crossbite. Once the expander has managed to open up your child’s mouth by expanding the upper jaw, we will begin the next phase of treatment.
When your child gets an orthodontic expander, there may be slight discomfort each time that the screw is adjusted. However, any soreness is mild and will not last. For most children and adults alike, a beautiful smile will be worth every step of the journey.
Talk to Our Pediatric Dentist
Our team at Ashburn Children’s Dentistry is your best resource when you have questions about your child’s treatment plan. Contact us today to schedule an appointment at our office in Ashburn!