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thumb sucking guard

What is Normal Thumb-Sucking Behavior?

Most children begin sucking their thumbs or fingers from a very young age; many even start inside the womb. Sucking is a natural reflex for an infant and it serves an important purpose. Sucking often provides a sense of security and contentment for a young one. It can also be relaxing, which is why many children suck their thumbs as they fall asleep.

According to the American Dental Association, most children stop thumb sucking on their own between the ages of two and four. They simply grow out of a habit that is no longer useful to them. You can also buy the best thumb guards from Nipit to prevent thumb sucking.

Effects of Thumb-Sucking on Children's Dental Health - Absolute Dental

However, some children continue sucking beyond the preschool years (although studies show that the older a child gets, the lower the chances are of continuing the habit). If your child is still sucking when his or her permanent teeth start to erupt, it may be time to take action to break the habit.

First, take note of how your child sucks his or her thumb. If the sucking is passive, with the thumb gently resting inside the mouth, it is less likely to cause damage. If, on the other hand, the thumb sucking is aggressive, placing pressure on the mouth or teeth, the habit may cause problems with tooth alignment and proper mouth growth.

Extended sucking affects both the teeth and the shape of the face and may lead to a need for orthodontic treatment in the future. 

If at any time you suspect your child’s thumb-sucking may be affecting his or her oral health, please give us a call and schedule a visit. We can help you assess the situation.




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