Palatal Expansion Explained

The world of orthodontics can be mysterious and hard to discern. Before sitting down for a procedure that you don’t understand, take a few minutes to make sure you’re up to date on what’s happening!

Palatal Expansion Definition

This is a simple procedure and is often done in conjunction with other orthodontic work. Your oral surgeon or orthodontist will widen the roof of your mouth giving you more room for your teeth to erupt and emerge. There are a wide number of reasons that you might need your palate widened and the procedure can be done at any point in your life!

Reasons for Palatal Expansion

There are a lot of reasons that this might be recommended and it’s usually because braces alone won’t quite correct the issue. While you might still need to retain or obtain braces, palatal expansion may lessen the need to keep them long-term!


This is a condition where the lower jaw is wider than the upper one and the upper teeth will end up biting inside the lower teeth. The palatal expansion will allow the teeth to sit more comfortably inside the mouth and line things up more clearly.


Underbites are characterized by the front lower teeth sticking out farther than the front upper teeth. Professionals like Burke & Beckstrom Orthodontics can quickly do a palatal expansion and set things in line again.

Cleft Palate

While underbites and crossbites can happen over time, cleft palates occur before birth and can be quickly corrected with some simple surgery. The tissue on the roof of the mouth doesn’t fuse which causes an opening in the palate itself. Scar tissue can form as it heals and keeps the palate from expanding like usual so corrective surgery is needed.

Crowded Teeth

Permanent teeth have a hard time making their way into your mouth when the whole place is just a little too crowded. Palatal expansion done early on can give a young person’s mouth more room to allow permanent teeth to erupt lessening the amount of time spent in braces.

Impacted Teeth

Impacted teeth can rapidly become painful and they’re usually held hostage by other teeth and kept from erupting by a lack of space. By performing a palatal expansion, orthodontists and dentists can give the impacted teeth room to come in, thus alleviating pain and giving you plenty of room to grow!

Breathing Conditions

A narrow palate can cause serious breathing conditions like mouth breathing and sleep apnea. Poor sleep can cause other issues in other areas of life including social situations, school problems, and overall irritability. A simple palatal expansion can help ease issues in no time!


A simple procedure can open up a whole new world when it comes to fit, style, and a better life! Palatal expansions make your time in braces shorter and help keep other health issues at bay. If you need help with crossbites, impacted teeth, or even breathing conditions give Burke & Beckstrom Orthodontics jingle at