Get dental care for thumb sucking issues in Chastain.

Your child may find comfort in habits like thumb-sucking or using a pacifier. These habits can offer soothing relief to young children and provide them with a sense of security. However, at Elite Smiles in Chastain, we know that it’s essential to understand when these habits could pose a risk to your child’s dental health and when to consult an orthodontist.

Understanding Normal Thumb Sucking

Most children start thumb-sucking or using pacifiers at a very young age, often even before birth. These behaviors serve as natural reflexes that can help infants relax and self-soothe, particularly when they fall asleep.

According to the American Dental Association, most children naturally stop thumb-sucking between the ages of two and four. However, some children continue this habit beyond their preschool years. If your child is still thumb-sucking when their permanent teeth begin to emerge, it may be time to take steps to break the habit. Prolonged thumb sucking can place undue pressure on the teeth and gums, leading to several potential issues.

Potential Dental Issues

Open Bite

Normally, the upper teeth should slightly overlap the lower teeth where they touch in the front of the mouth. Aggressive thumb sucking can push teeth out of alignment, causing a condition known as “open bite.” In such cases, the upper and lower teeth fail to make contact at all, which almost always requires orthodontic intervention.

Jaw Problems

Your child’s jaw and palate are still developing. Aggressive thumb sucking can alter the shape of the palate and jaw, potentially affecting the overall facial structure.

Speech Difficulties

Extended thumb sucking can lead to speech difficulties such as lisping, tongue thrusting, or difficulty pronouncing certain letters.

Seeking Help

If your child struggles to stop thumb-sucking, there are dental appliances and mouthguards available to discourage the habit. Reach out to Elite Smiles Pediatric Dentistry in Chastain for personalized guidance and support. We’ll work with you and your child to prevent future orthodontic problems and establish a foundation for a lifetime of beautiful smiles.

Contact Elite Smiles Chastain Pediatric Dentistry:

Elite Smiles Chastain Pediatric Dentistry
91 W Wieuca Rd NE STE 400
Atlanta, GA 30342