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A Quick Guide to Orthodontic Terms

Sep 22, 2014 - 05:09 PM EST |  Posted under: General, Orthodontics
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You have made the wise decision to start your child in orthodontic treatment. Now that you are dealing with braces for kids, you might find yourself faced with terms that you have never come across. If you have found yourself in an orthodontist’s office or staring in your child’s mouth asking, “What is that thing?” then check out these brief descriptions.

Palate Expander

A palate expander is an appliance that is often used in the early stage, or phase I, of orthodontics. Its name describes its purpose: it expands or widens the upper jaw so that top teeth and bottom teeth can fit together better. It achieves progressive expansion by being widened by the orthodontist through the turning of a key.

Separators

Separators, or spacers, are just that. They are very small rings that are placed between teeth to create enough space for braces, bands, and other more permanent orthodontic appliances. They typically stay in for about two weeks, or long enough to create adequate space between crowded teeth.

Bite Plate

A bite plate is an appliance most commonly used to open one’s bite. It often prevents the upper and lower teeth from meeting when the bite is closed. The purpose of this appliance in braces for children is to provide space for teeth to properly erupt.

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“Everyone I have had contact with is this office has been awesome!! We live over 35 miles away and I would drive longer if needed to have such great dental care. The waiting in room is full when we have arrived, but this office runs like a well oiled machine and we do not ever wait long to go in for the appointment. The way the staff treats my child is outstanding. I trust my child in the care of all of the staff. I appreciate that I am allowed to be in the room for the treatments, but I do not feel it is needed, but because he is in good hands. My only small criticism is that is can be difficult to get an appointment as the wait is 2-3 months out, but it is well worth the wait. The staff deserves recognition with a nice breakfast or lunch for doing such a great job!! I truly hope this message is shared with them because it is important for staff to know they are appreciated.”

– Peyton S.
What Our Patients Say About Us

“Everyone I have had contact with is this office has been awesome!! We live over 35 miles away and I would drive longer if needed to have such great dental care. The waiting in room is full when we have arrived, but this office runs like a well oiled machine and we do not ever wait long to go in for the appointment. The way the staff treats my child is outstanding. I trust my child in the care of all of the staff. I appreciate that I am allowed to be in the room for the treatments, but I do not feel it is needed, but because he is in good hands. My only small criticism is that is can be difficult to get an appointment as the wait is 2-3 months out, but it is well worth the wait. The staff deserves recognition with a nice breakfast or lunch for doing such a great job!! I truly hope this message is shared with them because it is important for staff to know they are appreciated.”

– Peyton S.