Types of Palatal Expanders

Woman getting a dental treatment

Most pediatric orthodontic issues are primarily attributed to problems with a child’s arch development. These include malocclusions, crooked and crowded teeth crossbites and impacted teeth. Most parents opt for an orthodontist’s opinion when their children reach teenage years.

But research has shown that this might be too late to intervene in most issues effectively. There are various orthodontic appliances you can use for your pediatric patients to correct narrow dental arches from about seven to 10 years.

One of these is a palatal expander, which increases your patients’ palatal arch and provides more room for dental development. Here are these options.

Rapid palatal expanders

This widens a patient’s upper jaw through the application of gentle pressure by different appliances on the upper molars for three to six months. As the jaw widens, there might be some space on the right and left side of the jaw, but this is normal.

After the desired expansion is achieved, a rapid palatal expander might be worn for some months to prevent regression.

Slow palatal expanders

These work more or less like rapid palatal expanders but take more time to get results than the latter. Slow palatal expanders are changed every eight weeks, and it takes about four weeks to increase in size of their wearers’ palates.

Most patients prefer slow palatal expanders since they are generally less uncomfortable than the rapid ones.

Implant-supported expanders

These work like rapid and slow palatal expanders but include two to four small implants. Implant-supported implants gradually increase a patient’s palate size over approximately two weeks. Though faster compared to other palatal expander options, there is an increased risk of infection development on the implants.

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The efficiency of your patient’s palatal expander use regardless of its type from the above primarily depends on the appliance. It is therefore essential to get a reliable orthodontics laboratory to fabricate your palatal expanders.

This will guarantee the success of your patients’ treatment and handsome returns for your practice.