Instructions For Your New Expander
What is an expander?
An expander is a metal appliance used to widen the jaw to correct cross bite or make room for new teeth. It's glued to the molars for 9 months.
- If the expander becomes loose, make an appointment to re-insert. Do not try to further loosen or remove expander.
- Clean and rinse the expander thoroughly after every meal to dislodge food.
How do I turn my child's expander?
- Have the child lie on his or her back with the head over the edge of a bed or over the arm of a sofa. Use adequate lighting from a bright lamp or flashlight.
- Opening as wide as possible will minimize the gag reflex.
- Place the key in the center of the hole and turn in the direction of the arrows that are on the expander.
- Turn the expander toward the back of the mouth until you can see the next hole.
- Carefully remove the key in a down-and-back direction. Caution: Be very careful not to “un-turn” the expander when removing the key.
- Turn expander using the key every night (same time) until directed by doctor.
- Takes a week for the patient to feel normal after insertion.
- Patient needs to practice talking and drinking
What can I expect with my child's new expander?
- Their speech will sound funny at first, but improves with practice
- They will salivate more
- They will feel tightness on the molars and possible tingling across the bridge of the nose, this will subside in 5 minutes after turning the key.
- Every turn will create a ¼ mm space
- A space between the front teeth may appear over time but will decrease once you stop turning expander.
- You will return to the office after 2 weeks so your doctor can note the progress of your expansion.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to give us a call!