A palate or palatal expander is used for a variety of orthodontic issues. It widens or expands the upper jaw, in order to create more room in the mouth. More room can be necessary for proper tooth and proper jaw alignment. And, an expander can also help increase air flow and make breathing easier. Why? Because expanding the upper jaw can positively affect the floor of the nasal cavity.
Why is a Palatal Expander Prescribed?
If a palatal expander is prescribed, it is necessary to correct the bite. As one example, a posterior crossbite is most successfully treated with a palate expander. While occasionally used for adults, a palate expander is most commonly prescribed to treat children and young teens, when the success rate is the highest.
Visiting an orthodontic professional at an early age allows early diagnosis and treatment for any dental problems, making an orthodontic visit key for any child.
The expander assists in widening the upper arch so that the upper teeth can align with the lower teeth, for a better bite. It also can make more room for teeth that are crowded, preventing the need for any permanent teeth extractions and shaping an attractive smile.
A palate expander is not terribly uncomfortable to wear, and your child can eat and drink normally – with a few exceptions, such as avoiding hard or sticky foods that can break the expander.
How Long Does Treatment Last with a Palatal Expander?
It’s a relatively short amount of time that most palatal expanders are needed to expand the palate itself- usually just between 3 and 6 weeks. However the expander is most often worn for about twelve months, to allow bone that has formed and expanded to reach full maturity.
While the expander is worn, there is one step in the process that requires the help of a parent or caregiver: it needs to be turned through the use of a small expander key. The key goes inside the device to accomplish this simple task. It doesn’t hurt, though your child could feel some pressure against teeth and the roof of the mouth.
So How Much Does a Palatal Expander Cost?
Palatal expanders typically cost between $2,900 and $3,300. Of course, the cost depends on your orthodontist, and whether or not you are covered by insurance. We can answer any questions you may have about your insurance and what it covers. In addition, our office is happy to provide payment options including full payment discounts, family plans, finance plans with no initial payment necessary, and in-house, interest free finance plans. Care Credit and Lending Point are both finance plans we have available for your convenience.
Ready to Learn More About Palate Expanders?
If you’d like to know more about palate expanders, and how they can help, give us a call today! We would be happy to discuss everything from palate expanders to teeth straightening options from metal braces to Invisalign aligners at Signature Orthodontics!