Crossbite is a common form of malocclusion, where the teeth are overlapped, usually with the upper teeth fitting inside of the lower teeth when the mouth is closed or relaxed. At Hoybjerg Family Orthodontics, Dr. Christian Hoybjerg can resolve crossbite cases using a Palatal Expander, if treatment occurs in a timely manner. If you’re looking for an orthodontist in the Sacramento area, Hoybjerg Family Orthodontics provides customized care to every age group regardless of concern. Find out how the timely use of a palatal expander can help correct a crossbite.
A palatal expander is an appliance that sits against the roof of the mouth and applies pressure to gradually widen the upper jaw. Palatal expanders are effective when used during childhood orthodontic treatment. This is because during childhood the upper jaw is developing as two separate halves that are able to be gently pushed apart before they fuse later in adolescence. Widening the upper jaw treats crossbites, crowding, impacted teeth, and any condition that is caused or exacerbated by a too-narrow palate.
Treating your child’s crossbite using a palatal expander is quite simple. The device is custom made to fit the patient’s mouth, and anchors to several top teeth towards the back of the mouth. At the center of the appliance is a screw that connects the two halves, and which needs to be turned a tiny bit each day with a special key in order to gradually widen the jaw. This process usually takes between 3 and 6 months, and once the desired width is achieved the expander will be left alone for a few more months so that new bone can develop, stabilizing the palate.
For adults or older teenagers with crossbites, palatal expanders may not be a great option because the palate and upper jaw bones have already fused together. In situations like these, sometimes braces can be enough to correct the alignment of the teeth without moving the jaw, but other times corrective jaw surgery will be recommended to widen the palate.
If your child has a crossbite, now is definitely the time to start treatment off with a palatal expander. Since the window for this appliance’s effectiveness is somewhat small, request an appointment today and don’t hesitate. Hoybjerg Family Orthodontics knows that orthodontic treatment can change lives, and we strive to deliver our patients the highest quality care. If you have any questions please contact us and don’t forget to check out our blog!