Patients who are going through palate expander treatment either because of a crossbite, underbite, or any other orthodontic issues that require it used to face different problems during the treatment period , whether those problems are about the hardware itself or related to the way it works, and one of these common issue is when the palate expander key won’t turn.
As usual when i was scrolling up and down the social media looking for something that may have my attention, i have noticed that a lot of people are asking the same questions like, why does my palate expander key won’t turn ? how can i fix it and do i need to replace it ?
I did my digging and it appears that there are several reasons that may cause such problem, first let me show you how to turn the expander for people who doesn’t know the steps.
Turning a palate expander is an easy process that only require your attention and to focus where to insert the key and how to find the hole.
This video from Steve Yang will show you exactly how orthodontists are professionally turning the expander for their patients.
Now after you figured out how to do it, let’s go ahead and explain the reasons why this problem happens.
REASONS WHY PALATE EXPANDER KEY WON’T TURN :
1)- POOR DENTAL HYGIENE :
The majority of people with palate expander are ignoring an imprtant factor for the treatment process to be successful, it is the oral hygiene !
Orthodontists highly recommend for patients to wash the hardware and the mouth generally three times per day ( once after every meal), because ignoring this will make food trap between the palate expander and the roof of the mouth which is for sure one of the main reasons why palate expander key won’t turn.
So if you are not giving your oral hygiene enough attention you should probably put it under consideration and give it more attention to avoid such annoying situations from happening.
2)- THE HOLE DISAPPEARS :
Another problem why the palate expander key won’ turn is that sometimes when people try to turn the expander they don’t fully rotate it even if they think they did but that is not enough, usually you feel like you successfully completed the turn and then remove the key, and the next time you wanna turn it you won’t find the hole.
The fix is very simple all you need is to focus and have a good lighting, we need to return to the previous hole where we didn’t make a full turn ( it is located towards the back of the mouth) and simply insert the key to complete the turn.
A tip to help you make this done in case this happens to your child is to have him lay on the bed with his/her head tilted off the bed so the expander can be seen clearly, grab a lamp for a better lighting and look for the hole.
You should be able to see it in this position, if not, get a stick and run it gently from front to back until you find the hole then insert the stick in it and push it back as possibly as you can till you see the new hole up front.
Make sure you do it slowly and be careful not to hurt your child’s mouth with the stick.
Now you know why this happens and you must make sure from now on to complete the turn to avoid this problem from happening again 😀