Thumb Sucking & Your Child’s Smile

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Are you aware of the risk factors associated with thumb sucking? Thumb sucking can cause problems with a child’s teeth. Thus, it is especially important to eliminate the habit before a child’s permanent teeth begin to come in. If your child does not stop sucking their thumb by the time they are 4 years old, bring them in to see their pediatric dentist. Furthermore, consider the following:

– One of the biggest risks associated with thumb sucking includes bacteria from a child’s finger ending up in their mouth. This can cause tooth decay and infections.
– Ideally, your child should stop sucking their thumb by the age of 4. This is because this is around the time that their permanent teeth will grow in. If they continue to suck their thumb afterward, it can cause damage to their permanent teeth as well.
– Thumb sucking is linked to hindrances in the growth of teeth and the alignment of teeth.
– Always give your child confidence and praise whenever they stop sucking their thumb to teach them that it’s a habit they need to break.
– Medications prescribed by a child’s dentist can be used to help coat your child’s finger in a foul substance that will discourage them from sucking it.
– As an alternative to thumb sucking, pacifiers can be used. Although they come with their own risks, it is often an easier habit to break than thumb-sucking.

No matter which pediatric dentistry treatments you select, the real importance is the oral health benefits they can give. If you would like Dr. Jennifer Morgan and our team at DentalWorks to bring your child or a loved one in for a comprehensive exam to determine which treatment is right for them, please schedule an appointment at our office in Athens, Texas, by calling us at 903-675-0023.