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Palatal Expander

Giving Your Teeth the Space They Need

What Is a Palatal Expander?

A palatal expander is an appliance that fits into the roof of your mouth (palate). It widens your palate to improve the way your upper and lower jaws and teeth fit together (your bite). You wear a palatal expander for about 4 to 6 months. During the first few weeks, you or your orthodontist may activate (expand) the appliance. 


Types of Expanders

Not all palatal expanders are the same. The type you have and how long you wear it depend on the size and shape of your mouth. Your orthodontist will pick an expander that’s right for you. It will probably be one of these 3 types:


What You Can Expect?

Your palatal expander may take a few days to get used to. Chewing, swallowing, and talking may seem awkward. Your mouth or nose may be sore or tingly, or you may have a slight headache. Over-the-counter pain relievers can help you feel better.

In about a week or so, you may see gaps between your teeth. That’s a sign the expander is working. Your teeth will shift to fill the gaps.

Caring for Your Expander

Do your part to keep your palatal expander clean. Swish water in your mouth after eating or after drinking sugary soda or juice. When you brush your teeth, brush the expander, too. For removable expanders, brush and rinse the appliance each time you take it out. 

Activating the Expander

Most expanders need to be activated 1 or 2 times a day at first. You do this with a metal key that looks like a toothpick with a loop on one end. It may be tricky the first few times you try. But you’ll soon get the hang of it. 


Creating Space for Teeth

Your palatal expander creates more room in your mouth. This keeps your teeth from being crowded. Do your part to widen and care for your expander. By working with your orthodontist, you can help make your smile look its best. 

We will be happy to arrange a Free Consultation for you in order to get all the information you need to know

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