A palatal expander is used to help guide and direct the growth of the upper jaw in young orthodontic patients. The palatal expander is placed on the roof of your child’s mouth, widening the upper jaw by applying gentle pressure on the top molars. This allows the upper and lower teeth to achieve a more natural fit. Additionally, palatal expanders can create more room in the mouth for the adult teeth to grow in.

Why is a palatal expander needed?

Below are a few of the reasons why your child may need a palatal expander:

  • A front crossbite accompanied by a narrow upper arch
  • A back crossbite accompanied by a narrow upper arch
  • Not enough room for the adult teeth that are currently growing in
  • Not enough room for developing teeth that may need future extraction

Will a palatal expander hurt?

It’s normal to experience some discomfort in the first few days. Your child may also have difficulty swallowing and speaking for the first few days after the expander has been placed. To make sure that your child’s expander is removed on time, it’s important to adjust the palatal expander as directed to you by Dr. Garlock.

How long are palatal expanders worn?

It takes around a few weeks to a month to reach the necessary amount of expansion. However, your child will likely need to wear the expander for an additional six months to make sure there’s enough time for the bone to stabilize. Dr. Garlock will give you detailed instructions based on your child’s specific needs.

Here at Garlock Orthodontics, it’s important to us that your child achieves his or her dream smile! To schedule an appointment, please contact Garlock Orthodontics here in Aurora, Colorado.