What Is RPE (Rapid Palatal Expander)
Your expander is a special appliance that widens the roof of your mouth by gently separating the suture in the center of your palate. This is done to expand
the upper jaw for a proper fit with the lower jaw, to correct a cross bite
and/or to make room for crowded teeth.
What To Expect
You may experience some discomfort and pressure at the beginning when you turn the expander, or even a tingling/itchy feeling in the roof of your mouth or the bridge of your nose. You can take Tylenol or Advil for any discomfort you feel. You may also see a temporary space open up between your two upper front teeth. This space will close again after the palate has been expanded. Your speech might even be affected by this appliance and you could have trouble swallowing at first. These symptoms are temporary and they will lessen as your mouth gets used to the RPE.
How To Care For The RPE
You will need to take special care when you clean your expander and the area around it. Be sure to brush thoroughly around all the parts of the expander every day. We also want you to flush the area with water or mouthwash to prevent food from lodging under the appliance.
How To Turn The Expander –
Insert the key carefully into the hole in the middle front part of the expander. Then push the key gently and steadily from the front towards the back of your mouth. Do not back up once you have made the turn. Instead, remove the key towards your throat. Be sure to push the key as far back as possible, bringing a new keyhole into view.
TURN YOUR KEY 2 TIMES A DAY FOR # OF DAYS SPECIFIED BY DR. CLAUDIA
What To Avoid –
Please do NOT eat anything sticky that might become easily stuck under or around your expander. Avoid popcorn because the hulls can become lodged beneath a band and could cause a painful infection. Call us right away if anything breaks or becomes loose on your expander. We are always here to help you and keep you comfortable! Good Luck!
How to activate the Rapid Maxillary Expander in the mouth