At Define Orthodontics, we welcome patients of all ages, including children to visit our orthodontic office in Irving, TX. Our orthodontic services are comprehensive, meaning there is rarely an orthodontic concern that we cannot resolve. Dr. Sodhi, your local orthodontist in Irving, TX, brings warmth, experience, and a passion for dentistry to every patient. She can help younger patients and their parents address orthodontic concerns sooner rather than later to avoid the need for extensive orthodontic work later on. Learn more about the oral appliances used to address younger patients’ orthodontic concerns below.
Orthodontic Appliances in Irving, TX
Orthodontic appliances are often recommended to patients who are undergoing two-phase treatment. Two-phase treatment allows the orthodontist to address your child’s orthodontic concerns sooner rather than later, saving you time and money in the long run. With personalized orthodontic appliances to aid in the proper development of your child’s smile, we can set them up for lifelong oral health and wellness. The following are the different types of orthodontic appliances:
Palatal expanders create more space in a child’s mouth by gradually widening the upper jaw. They expand a small palate or underdeveloped palate to accommodate healthy permanent teeth development. Your child’s upper jaw actually develops as two separate halves that don’t completely fuse together until sometime after puberty. Before that happens, the two bones can gently be separated and stabilized over a period of several months using a palatal expander. The expander is custom-made for each individual and fits over several top teeth in the back of the mouth. Once the desired expansion is achieved, the palatal expander will remain in your child’s smile for a few more months to allow new bone to form in the gap and stabilize the expansion.
Functional appliances enable normal jaw and tooth development by addressing thumb sucking and tongue thrusting. Thumb sucking affects the development of the roof of the mouth or how the permanent teeth line up once fully grown. The risks of potential dental concerns caused by thumbsucking depend on how often, how long, and how intensely your child sucks their thumb. Similarly, tongue thrusting, or when your child pushes their tongue forward against the front teeth often, can have negative impacts on your child’s long-term dental development.
Sagittal appliances allow for normal tooth development where crowding may occur by slowly widening your child’s upper jaw arch. This creates more room for permanent teeth to develop in your upper jaw. Sagittal appliances are removable devices that fit in the roof of the mouth. Their purpose is to create room in the upper jaw by pushing one or both of the six-year molars back and sometimes to increase the width of the upper jaw. Designed for full-time wear, each time you bite, swallow, or talk, the sagittal appliance is activated and exerts gentle pressure on the teeth and dental arches, which also gives stability to the jaw joints.