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Does Thumb-Sucking Impact Your Child’s Dental Hygiene?

child teeth

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Every parent is concerned with their child’s dental health, especially if your  child is prone to sucking his or her thumb. As far as myths go, thumb sucking is often blamed causing cavities perhaps leading to requiring braces in teenage years. However, what is the truth? Are there any real threats to kids doing this for too long?   

This article hopes to reveal all the answers. If you are in search of a great dentist Newtown, there are some knowledgeable specialists you can consult. If you are  are worried about your childs dental health, getting a check-up and routine advice is highly recommended.

Is thumb sucking bad or good?

Thumb sucking has been known to be a soothing  for kids particularly those getting through the teething process. You should also consider that your child’s baby teeth are only temporary. Their permanent ones have not yet taken root yet. This means there is little harm at this stage that can be done to your child’s teeth.

What’s more important is that kids are getting into good habits as early on as possible. So, habits that become ingrained such as thumb sucking are easier to get rid of the sooner they are stopped. However, it’s good to note that it doesn’t affect children’s baby teeth.

The issue comes when the permanent teeth start growing. Constant thumb-sucking can cause the teeth to misalign which may be an issue in the teenager years possible leading to the requirement for braces. More importantly, it can cause the way the roots form at the bottom to grow differently in an unnatural way.  

Can we switch our child to a pacifier?

Pacifiers produce a similar motion so not really recommended as being a good replacement. However, if you are worried about weaning your child off thumb-sucking, it may be easier to choose a pacifier early on. 

When is it too much?

If its happening occasionally, it most likely should be fine. However, if they are finding so much comfort from the action that they are doing it all the time, it may start to cause issues down the line.

If you ever exhibit your toddler doing it in an aggressive manner, try to intervene at this stage.

When is it good to stop?

The best time to break the habit is as soon as possible. From 2-4 years old, baby teeth start to fall out and adult ones begin to form. It’s crucial for you to keep an eye on your little one’s oral health as if they are thumb-sucking too aggressively it may be having a big impact. If you are concerned, it’s a great idea to visit the dentist and maybe even book an appointment with your paediatric dental nurse to see what they suggest.


Note: This is a collaborative post and if you have any concerns about your childs oral health always consult your dentist 


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