Does your child have crowded teeth or does he or she always breathe through their mouth instead of their nose? A common problem for kids, especially in this country, is having a narrow upper jaw. The narrowness of the jaw causes crowded teeth and may be secondary to an airway issue.
The American Association of Orthodontics recommends children have an initial visit with an orthodontist by age 7. Although it is never too late to receive braces or other orthodontic treatment, an early screening is an ideal time to evaluate a child while they are still growing. Even if immediate treatment isn't necessary, a visit early on can simplify or reduce additional procedures as they grow.
A palatal expander is an orthodontic appliance that fits up to the roof of your mouth. It is used to widen the upper jaw and create the space needed for the upper and lower teeth to fit together. Different types of expanders are placed depending on the amount of crowding and the age of the patient. Palatal expanders are most often followed by braces to straighten out all the teeth.