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Maxillary Expansion with MARPE/MSE

The Benefits of Maxillary Expansion with MARPE/MSE and What to Expect During Treatment

A beautiful, well-aligned smile can boost your confidence and overall oral health. Maxillary expansion, a technique used in orthodontics used to widen the upper jaw (or maxilla), plays a pivotal role in achieving this goal for many patients. A narrow or constricted upper jaw can lead to a variety of orthodontic and functional issues, including crowded teeth, impacted canines, and breathing difficulties. Correcting a narrow maxilla is often a critical aspect of establishing a broad, beautiful smile with straight teeth and a healthy bite.

Fortunately, expansion has been routinely performed in growing children for many decades. However, older teen and adults have traditionally only been able to achieve successful maxillary expansion through surgical techniques which are invasive and expensive.

In recent years, the Maxillary Skeletal Expander (MSE) designed by the Won Moon, and other Mini-Implant Assisted Rapid Palatal Expander (MARPE) appliances have revolutionized the field of expansion for adults and in other challenging situations.

The doctors and team at Escott Orthodontics have successfully treated many dozens of patients with the MSE appliance. Today we explore the benefits of maxillary expansion with MARPE/MSE and provide insights into what to expect during this transformative orthodontic treatment.

Benefits of Maxillary Expansion with MSE

  1. Wider Smile and Improved Facial Harmony: One of the primary benefits of maxillary expansion with MSE is a broader smile. As the upper jaw expands, it creates more space for teeth, reducing crowding and improving overall facial aesthetics.
  2. Better Bite Alignment: MSE can correct crossbites and coordinate the size of the upper jaw with the size of the lower jaw – a key to a functional and comfortable bite.
  3. Improved Breathing and Sleep: MSE may significantly benefit individuals with breathing difficulties, such as those with narrow airways or sleep apnea. In some patients (but not all), expanding the maxilla can help improve airflow and reduce snoring and sleep-related issues. For patients with sleep-related and airway concerns, we partner with the patient’s primary care physician and/or sleep physician to determine the cause of the airway issues and monitor the patient’s response to the maxillary expansion.
  4. Prevent Impacted Teeth: A narrow upper jaw can lead to impacted canines and other dental problems in growing children and teens. MSE expands the maxilla, creating sufficient space for teeth to erupt naturally, reducing the need for extractions or surgical interventions.

What to Expect During MSE Treatment?

  1. Consultation and Evaluation: Your orthodontist will start with a comprehensive evaluation of your oral health and jaw structure. You’ll discuss your treatment goals and whether MSE is an appropriate option for you.
  2. Customized Treatment Plan: If MSE is recommended your doctor will create a customized treatment plan tailored to your specific needs and goals. This plan will outline the duration of treatment and the expected results.
  3. Appliance Placement: The MSE appliance is placed in the palate of your mouth and is secured using mini-implants (these look like very small surgical screws). While some initial discomfort is normal, most patients adapt quickly to the device.
  4. Activation and Adjustment: Over the course of treatment, the appliance will be periodically adjusted to gradually expand the upper jaw. Your doctor will closely guide you through this phase of the treatment.
  5. Diastema (Gap Between Front Teeth): As the maxilla expands, you may notice a gap forming between your front teeth, known as a diastema. This is a normal part and actually a sign of success of the expansion process. The space can be closed with orthodontic treatment once the desired maxillary width is achieved.
  6. The Fun Part: After the maxillary expansion is complete, your orthodontist will guide you through the next steps in your orthodontic treatment to straighten teeth and build a beautiful smile.

The Dome Procedure to Assist Maxillary Expansion with MSE/MARPE

Expansion with MSE is not guaranteed to be successful for all adults; age and gender play a role in predicting success. Excellent results are routinely achieved for men age 25 and younger, and women age 30 and younger. Adults older than this may still successfully achieve favorable maxillary expansion, but a simple surgery (performed by an oral surgeon) may be recommended to improve the treatment response; this surgery is known as a DOME procedure. DOME, which stands for Distraction Osteogenesis Maxillary Expansion, is far more comfortable and less invasive alternative to traditional surgical expansion techniques. The DOME procedure involves a controlled separation of the maxillary bone, allowing for MARPE/MSE expansion to proceed in situations in which it would have otherwise failed. Unlike conventional surgical approaches, DOME doesn’t involve the aggressive separation of the maxilla from other skeletal structures of the skull. Therefore, DOME significantly reduces post-operative pain and recovery time. Patients can look forward to a more comfortable experience while still benefiting from the remarkable results of maxillary expansion.


Choosing the right orthodontist can make all the difference in your journey to a healthier, more confident smile. Escott Orthodontics stands out as a trusted expert in orthodontics, serving patients in Orlando and Lake County, Florida. If you’re considering maxillary expansion with MSE or any other orthodontic treatment, we invite you to experience the difference of working with our doctors and team at Escott Orthodontics.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation to begin your journey to a brighter, more confident you. Discover the benefits of orthodontic care with a true expert in the field, right here in Orlando and Lake County, Florida. Your smile deserves the very best, and that’s exactly what you’ll find at Escott Orthodontics.

Maxillary Expansion with MARPE MSE Orlando