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Thumb sucking effects on child’s oral health

Thumb sucking is usually a natural reflex for children and many of them start when they are in the womb. Concerns only typically arise when thumb sucking becomes prolonged and lasts well beyond infancy. It is then that dental health issues start to become apparent.

As per the British Orthodontic Society, if the thumb sucking habit in a child stops by the age of 7 then, teeth can often correct themselves with normal growth. However, evidence suggests that one in every eight children between the ages of 7 and 11 have a prolonged digit sucking habit. In such cases when the habit continues beyond the age of 7, then the position of the adult teeth 0r permanent teeth can be permanently affected. Here self-correction is less likely to occur. This makes it all the more important that thumb sucking is stopped in its tracks at an early age.


Long term effects of thumb sucking


Studies have shown, if thumb sucking becomes a long-term habit the impact on oral health can be severe and long-term. Problems such as crossbite, an anterior open bite, misshapen palette and even difficulty with chewing. Experts have noted that thumb sucking can lead to significant complications such as speech impairment, irregularities in teeth, malocclusion, intra-oral ulcers.

The National Institutes of Health has said that anterior open bite and posterior cross bite are the most frequent malocclusions associated with prolonged sucking habits. These arising concerns lead for the use of THUMB GUARDS as preventive measures.


Is oral health is so important for young children?


Good oral health highlights the importance of equipping our children with the tools and measures to maintain a healthy mouth along with, taking the time to educate them on why it’s so important. By instilling good oral health in children from a young age we can set them up with a healthy smile for life. A healthy smile is one of the best gifts an adult can give their child which not will not only save them from painful treatments down the line but could also boost their confidence and self-esteem.


What is the best time to get your child a dental visit?


As suggested by the dental experts, the earliest the better. Taking your children to a dentist for a regular check-up helps to ease out any fear or dental anxiety that may build in your child in due course. As soon the first tooth erupts in your baby s mouth he / she is ready for a visit to the dentist.