Thumb Sucking and Its Effect on Your Child’s Health

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Are you aware that sucking on thumbs can damage your smile and your natural teeth alignment? Given the dangers that exist, thumb sucking should be discouraged when you see your child begin to implement the habit.

Due to the fact that thumb sucking can slow the growth of teeth, you should always make an effort to help your child quit as soon as possible. Usually, a child’s first permanent teeth grow in around the age of four, which is when they should stop sucking their thumbs. Even though pacifiers are equally bad for a child’s oral health, it is often an easier habit to break.

Children often use thumb sucking as a means of defense, comparable to a security blanket. Always praising your child and raising their confidence is the first step in overcoming obstacles associated with thumb sucking. If you are struggling with your child, their doctor can give them a treatment that dips their fingers in a foul tasting substance, which discourages them from continuing the routine.

Make sure to take good care of your child’s teeth so they can last a lifetime. For more information about thumb sucking, or to schedule an oral exam with Dr. David O'Donnell and our team at ODonnell Family Dentistry, give us a call at 859-269-4613. Our dentist office is conveniently located in Lexington, Kentucky. We will be glad to help your child achieve the results their teeth require.