Most parents panic when they hear that their child needs a treatment with palate expander. They fear that the expander causes pain to the child and it is difficult to eat with the expander. Though some of their apprehensions are true, palate expanders are not as painful as they seem. They are most commonly used orthodontic devices that are used to improve the shape of the jaw and brighten the smile.
Palate expanders or jaw expanders work best in children. The palate bone comprises of two bones that fuse at the center. The bones do not fuse till puberty and hence are easier to expand. The palate expanders exert pressure on the bones and create a gap between them. The bones expand and grow to fill the gap created by the expander. This process results in jaw expansion.
It is always advisable to consult a reputed and experienced orthodontist for palatal expanders. The orthodontist conducts a full examination of the mouth and takes some 3D images and X-rays to assess the condition. He may prescribe palatal expanders if the jaw bone is misshapen or too small and cannot accommodate the teeth, which results in crowded or missing teeth. Here are some tips to find the right orthodontist.
- Ask for references from your family and friends. Speak to people who have undergone orthodontic treatments to get references of a respected orthodontist in your neighborhood. Shortlist a few orthodontists with most number of positive referrals.
- After shortlisting a couple of orthodontists, schedule an initial appointment. Visit the clinic and meet the orthodontist, who is going to treat you. Ask questions to get clarity about the time taken, the costs, the after care and so on. Most orthodontic clinics offer a free first appointment.
- Observe the facilities at the clinic, the general atmosphere, the professionalism of the staff, the personality of the dentist, and other factors during the initial visit to the orthodontic clinic. All these factors play a crucial role in choosing an orthodontist for jaw expansion treatment.
- Check the patient testimonials of the shortlisted orthodontist. You can find feedback about orthodontists on the website of the clinic, on social media pages, support groups etc.
- Ask for an estimate. The estimate should contain all the costs including those of the evaluation, treatment, devices, and after care. Compare the estimates and choose an orthodontist who provides high quality services at reasonable costs.
Choosing the right orthodontist is important to ensure that your child gets the right jaw expanders treatment. The child should be comfortable to visit the orthodontist to make the treatment process easier.