Interceptive orthodontics is a modality used by orthodontists and pediatric dentists on young children in order to mitigate the amount of orthodontics that will be needed as the child reaches adolescence.
Among the most common appliances used in interceptive orthodontics is the palatal expander. Your dentist will be able to determine whether your child will require an expander during the course of their treatment.
If a child has a narrow palate that is constricted, it is generally a harbinger of a developing malocclusion, or bad bite. A palatal expander is a device which is attached to the upper molars with a spring in the middle which can be adjusted to promote expansion of the palate to allow for a more normal eruption of the permanent teeth.
When placed, a palatal expander may cause some minor discomfort. This sort of discomfort will not last very long and will typically only last around the time that the expander has been expanded. Generally, however, the device is tolerated very well by practically all patients.
Palatal expanders, when prescribed by a dentist in a comprehensive orthodontic treatment plan, are very helpful in creating an environment that may lessen a young’s person’s orthodontic needs and are a wonderful aid in correcting malocclusions.