Expansion plates are removable appliances that move the teeth. Plates are useful if there are only a few teeth to be moved, or where patients do not want braces. Unfortunately plates are very limited in their actions.
Beware of the offer of plates that can correct the teeth when being worn to bed. These plates are doing nothing. Plates need to be worn for a significantly longer period to be effective.
Some dentists and orthodontists believe most patients need plates. Dr Vaughan treats very few patients with plates for the following reasons:
1. Plates reduce problems, but rarely correct problems. Braces will still be needed in most cases, so why not correct everything with the braces. This saves the parents money and the child the trauma of plate treatment.
2. Plates may sound exciting for the patient, but they often fail as the patient does not wear them as prescribed. Plates are often uncomfortable. If the patient does not wear the plate the patient takes the blame for the treatment failing. This has a number of flow on effects such as wasted money, damage to the parent child relationship, patient’s loss in confidence in treatment outcomes, and so on.
3. Dr Vaughan see plates as a form of internal marketing. Marketing is important, and we all want to earn an income, but internal marketing is just selling more treatment to the patients you already have. This practice believes in external marketing and aims to get new patients and treat them for a lower overall cost.