It’s adorable. It’s endearing. It’s something most of us engaged in at least once or twice when we were little. But thumbsucking doesn’t just lose its cuteness as your child gets older. It can have serious dental consequences for kids who suck their thumbs regularly and for too long.
Thumb sucking is both a natural habit for young children and a common way to learn self-soothing or provide instant comfort. Often this behavior will fade away on its own with no lasting effects, but this isn’t always the case. If your child is still sucking his thumb when his/her adult teeth start to come in (around 5 or 6), it can cause the following problems:
It is important to note that a particularly aggressive thumbsucking habit can cause these types of problems even earlier, when your child is still using baby teeth - if you think this may be the case, consult a dental professional.
So what are some ways we can nip this habit in the bud before it starts to become a problem?
If you’re worried about what thumbsucking may be doing to your child’s mouth, don’t hesitate to talk to your dentist. He/she can help you assess the severity of the issue and troubleshoot from there!
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