Can adults get palate expanders?

Are you an adult who wants to expand your palate? Maybe you’re tired of the same old flavors and want some excitement in your mouth. Perhaps you have a crossbite that’s causing jaw pain, and a palate expander could be the solution. But wait, can adults even get palate expanders? Let’s find out!

What Are Palate Expanders?

Before we dive into whether or not adults can get palate expanders, let’s first understand what they are. A palate expander is a dental device used to widen the upper jaw/palate. It consists of metal bands that wrap around molars on both sides of the mouth and connect to an expansion screw in the middle.

The orthodontist will activate this screw regularly (usually once every day) with a special key which gradually widens the device so that it applies outward pressure onto the bones in your upper jaw/palate. Over time, this causes these bones to separate from each other and create more space.

Palatal expansion is most common for children between ages 8-14 because their skull hasn’t fully fused yet making their bone structure more malleable/adjustable than adults’.

But does this mean there is no hope for adults who want or need palatal expansion? Keep reading!

Is There An Age Limit for Palate Expansion?

Contrary to popular belief, there is NO age limit for getting palate expanders! This means that even as an adult with fully developed bones/skull or somebody over 50 years’ old, you may hope to benefit from palatal expansion if required.

However, individuals under 30 tend to experience quicker healing times when compared with those over 30 years irrespective of whether they got expanding devices fitted during teenage years or adulthood

Why Do Adults Need Palatal Expansion?

There are several reasons why an adult might need a palate expander, including:

  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • TMJ (temporomandibular joint) pain and discomfort
  • Crossbite or an overcrowded teeth arch can impact your entire facial structure from smile to neck muscles.
  • Sleep Apnea: A tight upper jaw with a restricted airway passage is one of the major factors behind sleep apnea.

Palatal expansion might be necessary if any of these issues are present. If you’re unsure whether you need or qualify for palatal expansion as an adult, see a dental specialist who will assess you on this information and provide recommendations based on their findings.

Remember that treating both functional and cosmetic concerns in orthodontics will improve health outcomes long term irrespective of age which should be taken into consideration when pondering whether or not to accept treatment offered by professionals specializing in orthodontics

The Adult Palate Expansion Procedure

If it’s determined that palatal expansion is necessary for your oral health/sleep disorder diagnosis purposes, the procedure will vary slightly compared to that for teenagers. Whereas the jury’s out regarding labeling adulthood defined by specific ages due to varying events such as childbearing/rearing habits etc., 18 years old remains max criterion for teenages trying expanders

These metal bands attached onto molars have seen improvement over time so they’re more comfortable than before now— though still uncomfortable at first—equipped with bite pads/guards designed specifically fit adults’ mouths rather than children whose smaller oral cavities may make them unfitting even after elastic separators are used .

After fitting these somewhat alien mini gadgets (yes they feel weird!), gradually turning an expander key located centrally until openings were observed between neighboring teeth mark small amounts/ progressions readying each individual bone repositioning . The key used could differ according the manufacturers’ guidebook/instructor recorded activity manual containing detailed instructions observations included recording angles different parts cranium bone spreads analyzed after each month’s appointments with an experienced orthodontist

The entire palate expansion process on average for adults ranges between 3-6 months based upon multiple factors discussed above including age of the patient, how much widening is required and how responsive their oral structures responds to treatment.

Recovery Time

Adults taking guidance from any specialist team who performed jaws expanders see a quicker course compared teenagers as having less dense bone makes changes easier adjust. However, like other dental procedures/orthodontic appliances, they also demand some time before speech patterns returns normalcy patience will need it during this transition so don’t be embarrassed if you sound like Tweety Bird or Sylvester The Cat for a while!.

Once fully recovered , resumption working using mouthpieces mentioned can start immediately (depends on individual timeline). However avoid eating crunchy snacks until orthodontists give you thumbs up directly.

Potential Risks Involved in Palate Expander Treatment

Before making any decisions that affect your life, weigh the benefits with potential risks carefully! In this instance, some possible downsides which shouldn’t dissuade but increase counselled urgency might include:

  • Tooth/Tissue Damage: During the adjustment phase, palatal expander may rub against cheeks/tongue potentially consuming healthy tissue;
  • Discomfort: Soreness exists post-adjustment similar braces worn after certain times experiencing minor sore periods body adjusts new change ;
  • Hygiene difficulties: Food fragments likely to become stu(k|bborn) between metal elements needing thorough cleaning regularly beyond which would cause bacterial growth leading increased risk infection possibility oral diseases such cavities breakdown periodontitis front collected areas going unnoticed long enough present dangerous situations relating surrounding teeth/gums;
  • Speech obstacle;

Hiring right dentistry team highly crucial aspect consider since procedure requires accuracy concerning location chosen installation position where appliance placed people wearing belong specialized professional dental industry personnels Having option insurance coverage always better idea considering worst-case scenarios which can derail one’s lifetime financial investments when dental work/hardware replacement hastiness is required .


In conclusion, the age-old myth that palate expanders are only useful for children has been debunked! Adult patients can also receive palatal expansion treatment if deemed necessary by a dentist/orthodontist specialized in managing such conditions. Remember to choose your dental team wisely and expected changes course of installation process backed occasional discomfort with patience knowing benefit gain improves oral structures long-term.