Adjuncts and Accessory Appliances
These next appliances help with movements the brackets alone can’t accomplish. These tend to be more case specific and are used in conjunction, or at the same time, as the braces. They may be found in the roof of the mouth as in the case of an expander, habit appliance, or bite plate, OR, they may be external to the mouth as in the case of the headgear or the facemask. They may be utilized for certain types of tooth movement or for growth modification where applicable in a growing child.
Expanders are placed in the roof of the mouth and do exactly that, expander the upper arch of teeth. Sometimes, the top jaw does not grow wide enough. The expander is a way to develop the upper arch either by rounding out the bone (alveolar process) or by literally separating the two halves of the roof of the mouth. True expansion of the two halves of the upper jaw can only occur at a younger age which is why it’s important to have your child screened for certain problems early. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends the first screening for the age of seven. Dr. Renick leaves expanders in for a minimum of six months to stabilize the correction.