One of the most common questions we get in our office- will my child need an expander and will it hurt?


An expander is a tool Dr. Aten will use if your child’s jaw is too narrow and causing crowding of their teeth. The optimal and most comfortable time to use it is before the roof of your mouth (upper palate) is done growing.  We recommend your child come in for a consult at the age of 7. We can catch these types of problems early and make treatment more comfortable for your child!




Another common concern we address is early loss of primary (baby) teeth. If your child loses a baby tooth early, usually due to decay or trauma, it is important to see your orthodontist for an evaluation. Depending on their age, they may need a fixed appliance called a space maintainer. This ensures there is still plenty of room for the adult tooth to come in and can make orthodontic treatment easier for them in the future.





When you are using orthodontic appliances, you need to avoid anything hard or sticky that can break the appliance or pull it off.  Sometimes this can still happen, because we place these with a temporary cement to reduce any trauma when removing them. If one side of your expander falls out, gently attempt to push it back onto your tooth and stop turning the expander.  If the entire expander falls out, you can wear it as a removable appliance until you can be seen at our office. Make sure to remove it before eating, brushing, and sleeping and stop using the key to make turns until it can be recemented.




At Aten Orthodontics we use modern technology and the most up to date appliances to help make treatment smooth for you and your child. In order to create the custom appliance an intraoral scanner will be used to capture a 3D image- no more goopy impressions! We also avoid bulky appliances at all costs, check out our photos and how far orthodontics has come!



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