Comfort Tips For Your Palatal Expander
Posted on 02/10/2024

At Mack Orthodontics, we offer our patients many options for correcting tooth and bite issues. If you or your child have certain dental issues, the orthodontist might place a palatal expander in your mouth. This treatment can widen your jaw and create more space to accommodate your teeth, but it can cause some discomfort. These tips can bring comfort while using a palatal expander.

What Is a Palatal Expander?

A palatal expander is an orthodontic device our orthodontist in Eldridge recommends to patients of all ages. It's fitted on the roof of the mouth and used to widen your upper jaw to correct your dental problem. This treatment is usually used in children, but teens and adults can also benefit if they have an issue that requires widening the jaw.

Conditions Treated by Palatal Expanders

Palatal expanders are appropriate orthodontic treatment in Bettendorf, IA for a few different dental conditions. They can expand your jaw if you have misaligned bite issues such as an overbite, underbite, crossbite, or open bite. A palatal expander is also effective at treating crowded, crooked, impacted, or overlapped teeth by creating more space in the mouth. It can even help people with obstructive sleep apnea.

Comfort Tips for Your Palatal Expander

There are things you can do to get the most out of your palatal expander orthodontic treatment in Bettendorf, IA, and relieve any discomfort. While using it, soft foods can help keep you nourished while preventing damage to the device. Consuming yogurt, smoothies, soup, soft vegetables and fruits and soft proteins can help keep you feeling full longer and keep your palatal expander in good condition. This doesn't mean you can't eat harder, crunchy foods, but if you do, chew thoroughly.

Cold foods like ice cream and iced drinks can combat any discomfort caused by your palatal expander. You can also use ice packs wrapped in a towel to your face to alleviate pain and reduce inflammation.

Our orthodontist in Eldridge understands that these tips may not be enough to ease your discomfort while using a palatal expander. This is why they recommend taking an over-the-counter pain reliever at least an hour before you turn it.

Finally, keeping your palatal expander clean is crucial. Although it might be difficult, you can do this by practicing your regular oral hygiene routine by brushing your teeth after each meal and flossing once per day. This can limit bacteria buildup that can damage the device and cause tooth decay and periodontal disease.

A palatal expander isn't fun to wear, but it can fix your dental problems and make your teeth better than ever. If you want to schedule a consultation with Mack Orthodontics at our Bettendorf or Eldridge, IA office, contact us at (563) 359-4686.