Dr. Pete Nathe at Yakima Smiles may recommend a growth appliance to correct damaging effects and help your child’s face and jaws develop correctly. We invite you to contact our office at (509) 965-7909 to learn more about the growth appliance in Yakima, Washington, and schedule an appointment with our dentist.

Interceptive and Corrective Orthodontics: Growth Guidance Appliance (For Younger Children)


The Growth Guidance Appliance is an exciting new orthopedic technology that actually stimulates the production of new bone and models and shapes existing bone. It corrects the devastating effects of mouth-breathing on the development of a child’s face, airway and jaw joints. It can:

  • Widen the upper palate
  • Cause the upper jaw to grow forward
  • Creates space and allows teeth to move to proper position
  • Decrease the need for future orthodontics if facial development problems are caught early and interceptive treatment initiated!


Mouth breathing, open mouth posture and tongue positioning habits are known to have a very destructive influence on a child’s developing face. Without the scaffolding effect of the tongue resting on the palate, the maxilla deforms in three dimensions and changes the shape of the maxilla and lower half of the face causing:

  • mid-face deficiency
  • elongated face
  • narrow face
  • larger appearing nose
  • thin lips
  • retracted lower jaw and chin
  • sloping forehead
  • increased chance of Temporal Mandibular Disorder (TMD or TMJ)
  • increased chance of clenching or grinding your teeth
  • increased chance of headaches
  • increased chance shoulder and neck pain
  • increased chance of back problems
  • increased chance of Obstructive Sleep Apnea


Achieving proper tongue posture and function by proactively addressing mouth-breathing requires addressing nasal and pharyngeal patency first.

Once, nasal breathing and proper oral posture have been re-established, it is possible to reverse the facial defects that have begun to develop in the small child with the help of the newly developed growth appliance. A dentist or other specialist can evaluate a child’s facial growth with a Cosmetic Line Score or with a Bolton Analysis. Yakima Smiles offers complimentary screening. If deficient growth tendency is discovered, growth guidance orthopedics can be used to correct the trajectory of growth and this can have dramatic effects on the face, jaw and airway.

A comfortable custom oral appliance is fabricated for the child that stimulates the palate to produce more bone and grow in each dimension. The entire midface and upper jaw broaden and grow forward allowing for a beautiful broad smile, a healthy airway, painless jaw joints and plenty of space for the teeth to evenly erupt. In some instances, a growth appliance can eliminate the need for future retraction orthodontics. A broad arch is critical for facial beauty, a healthy airway and the child’s overall well-being.



Schedule a consultation with our skilled dentist today to learn more about interceptive orthodontics and the growth appliance.