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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 8 yo DD has a pretty small jaw and some crowded teeth. She has lost maybe 6-8 baby teeth now and has a few of the permanent teeth coming in and there's not a heck of a lot of room there. So the dentist referred us to an orthodontist to see if there's anything preventative we could do at this point. So we went to the orthodontist who is now recommending this retainer like appliance to expand her jaw. It has sort of a spring there and they said you turn it once a week to expand it and they wear it for about 6 months. The cost is about $2900 and our insurance doesn't cover it. He is saying if we do this now then there'll be more room for the incoming teeth and then when she does get braces once all her permanent teeth are in they won't need to stay on as long. This all sounds a little hokey to me. Anyone have experience with this?
 

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Do it.<br>
I have experience on the other end - next year will be 10 years of braces and surgeries for what could have as a child be accomplished in months not years...I had to have a leforte and a BSSO...google it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> - they sawed my palate clean off....and screwed it back into place...<br><br>
3000 is cheap compared to letting it go and dealing with it once her jaw has grown.CHEAP <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> I've had 2 major oral maxfilliofacial "reconstruction" surgeries, 2 screw removals, 2 gum surgeries and have 1-2 more in the future...for what 6-12 months of orthdontic treatment as a teen would have been.... not 3 1/2 years in braces ...<br><br>
Fight the insurance company to cover it eventually most do look up a group on yahoo called orthogranthic surgery (I am shiloh on there too <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> there's two boards one moves faster one slower...they'd give you some great advice.<br><br>
Also since you are skeptical get a second opinion.
 

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There is a branch of dentistry called Orthotropics. Google around...The premise is that one should focus on proper jaw, head, mouth, etc. development in order to alleviate any need for orthodontia. You may find some answers (and more questions!) when you start searching for this term.
 

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Yep, been there and done that.<br><br>
DD and DS have both had palette expanders.<br><br>
DD's story:<br><br>
At age 3, the dentist told us she'd need Ortho when she hit 7 - she has a cross-bite and under bite. So, at 7, we took her in and they put the expander on. It was AMAZING. The difference is HUGE. Now, with DD, it was elective. She didn't need it, really, because she'll still need extensive Ortho (complete cutting and re-setting of lower jaw, braces) when she hits mature jaw age (16 for a girl), but we didn't want her to suffer until then with mashed in teeth, crooked smile, etc. We paid $1200, our insurance paid the other $1200. She had hers on for about 9 months when her incoming molars popped it off. Her doctor told me it may go back on once the molars are fully in. We'll see. Also, we turned hers once every other day for a month.<br><br><a href="http://i277.photobucket.com/albums/kk63/Miscellaneous79/DSC01666.jpg" target="_blank">Before</a><br><br><a href="http://i277.photobucket.com/albums/kk63/Miscellaneous79/03062008116.jpg" target="_blank">During</a><br><br>
DS's story:<br><br>
DS has an open bite (due to finger sucking) and cross-bite. He may have had an under-bite, but because of the finger sucking, we can't really tell. His x-rays did look great, though. DS got an expander, this time it was $1500 (our insurance paid the other $1500) because his case was more severe (he needed the crib to offset tongue thrusting and to help him stop the finger sucking). We turned his every day, once a day for 16 days. He's had it on for about 2 months now.<br><br><a href="http://i277.photobucket.com/albums/kk63/Miscellaneous79/DSC01483.jpg" target="_blank">Before</a><br><br><a href="http://i277.photobucket.com/albums/kk63/Miscellaneous79/DSC02342.jpg" target="_blank">During</a><br><br>
So, my experience has been GREAT. DD's smile is entirely different, it's awesome, and DS has stopped sucking his fingers and is finally stopping tongue thrusting (YEA!). They both fared really well with it, never complaining. Although, you will need to wash pillowcases often because of the drooling. HA HA.<br><br>
If you have any questions, let me know! Oh, and DH had the same thing when he was a teen (his side of the family have awful jaws).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the info everyone. I obviously need to do more research. I am thinking the orthodontist didn't explain this all very well. Also, they never said anything about her having bite problems.
 
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