What is Maxillary Expansion?

Maxillary Expansion involves gently widening the upper jaw (palate) to create more space for teeth to align correctly. This technique harnesses the natural growth potential in children to guide the development of a well-aligned dental arch and improved facial proportions.

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How does Maxillary Expansion work?

The treatment involves a specialized orthodontic appliance that exerts controlled pressure on the palate. This pressure gradually widens the suture in the middle of the upper jawbone, allowing the palate to expand. This process also influences the alignment of the teeth, providing sufficient space for crowded teeth to find their optimal positions.

What can orofacial appliances treat in children?

Applicants like Maxillary Expanders and ALF can effectively address a range of issues in children, including:

Crowded teeth

Creating additional space for teeth can prevent crowding and misalignment, reducing the need for tooth extractions.


Correcting crossbites can improve bite alignment and prevent asymmetrical facial growth.

Breathing and airway improvement

Expanding the palate and aligning in orofacial development can create more room for the tongue and improve airway function, potentially benefiting children with breathing issues like sleep apnea.

Facial aesthetics

Proper Maxillary Expansion can contribute to balanced facial proportions and a more appealing smile.


ALF assists in achieving proper bite alignment and jaw positioning, addressing issues like overbites and underbites.

TMJ disorders

By promoting harmonious jaw function, ALF can contribute to the relief of TMJ-related symptoms.

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What is an ALF appliance?

The ALF appliance is a unique orthodontic device designed to guide proper facial and dental development in growing children. It employs lightwire technology to encourage natural growth processes, allowing for harmonious alignment of the jaws, teeth, and facial structures. Unlike traditional braces, the ALF appliance focuses on optimizing oral function and promoting balanced growth rather than simply straightening teeth.

What are the benefits?

  • Facilitates natural growth: Orofacial appliances take advantage of the growth potential in children, resulting in more stable and long-lasting results.
  • Minimally invasive: The process is gentle and minimally invasive, making it well-tolerated by children.
  • Improved bite and function: Aligning the upper jaw and teeth can lead to a more harmonious bite and improved oral function.
  • Enhanced facial aesthetics: Maxillary Expansion and ALF contribute to balanced facial growth and aesthetics.
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Exploring Maxillary Expansion & ALF with the Aid of CT Scans

For pediatric patients undergoing maxillary expansion with ALF (Anterior Growth Guidance Appliance), CT scans offer detailed images of the facial and dental structures. These scans assist in evaluating the craniofacial morphology, aiding in assessing jaw growth and alignment. The insights provided by CT scans contribute to a comprehensive understanding of the child's orthodontic needs, ensuring a tailored and effective approach to maxillary expansion. However, the role of CT scans in maxillary expansion & ALF treatment may vary based on individual cases. A comprehensive evaluation, including clinical assessments and personalized medical advice, is recommended for precise diagnosis and treatment planning.

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Why choose us for your child's orofacial treatment?

At the San Francisco Center for TMJ and Sleep Apnea, our pediatric dental team, led by Dr. Amin Samadian, is dedicated to providing holistic, patient-centered care for your child's orofacial needs. We understand the importance of optimal growth and development during childhood. Our expertise in combining functional orthodontics and holistic approaches ensures that your child receives comprehensive care that promotes oral health and enhanced well-being. Choose us for personalized Maxillary expansion treatment delivered with warmth and understanding.

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