For most children who have crowded teeth and bad bites, it’s the result of narrow jaws or underdeveloped lower jaws. Functional appliances are used mainly in growing children to help with crowding issues by helping the upper and lower jaws develop to normal shape and size. When this treatment is successful, it may not be necessary to extract permanent teeth in a majority of the cases.
Posterior Crossbite Right
4 Years Later
Ideally, these functional appliances are used between ages 7 and 11, when the patient’s cooperation level is the highest. However, if the upper jaw is too narrow and is having a negative effect on breathing or speech, treatment can be started as early as 4 years old. They can also be used in adults to develop the arch to a more normal shape and size before orthodontic treatment.
Functional appliances can help reduce the time a child must wear fixed braces, as well as the need for the extraction of permanent teeth. They can also help develop the dental arches so that all the permanent teeth can erupt. This allows for an outstanding profile, broad smile and healthy jaw joints.
Below is a list of some functional devices that we use. Please click through to read more about each functional device and contact Rondeau & Associates for any questions or to schedule a consultation.
Twin Blocks™ are designed to hold the mandible in a forward position. It’s ideal for patients where a recessive mandible causes the front teeth to jet out.
The MARA™ (Mandibular Anterior Repositioning Appliance) is ideal for patients who have Class II skeletal malocclusions and deficient mandibles.
The Anterior Sagittal is an upper, removable orthodontic appliance that is used to correct crossbites involving the front teeth.
The Posterior Sagittal is a removable orthodontic appliance that’s used primarily to move the molars backwards and can be used on the upper or lower arches.
The new Tandem™ appliance is ideal for Class III skeletal patients who have normal mandibles and maxillas that are set back.
The Rick-A-Nator, a fixed functional appliance, consists of an incisal ramp that’s connected to the maxillary first molar bands via two connector wires.
The Schwarz Appliance is a transverse maxillary or mandibular expansion appliance, which is used mainly in older teens and adults to widen the maxillary or mandibular arches.
The Hyrax is one of the most popular fixed arch expansion appliances for older teens and adults.