Thumb Sucking & Your Child’s Teeth

Rochester HIlls, dentist, pediatric dentist, thumb sucking

When kids are little, they try to put pretty much everything in their mouths. At a young age, it’s just another way for them to explore and make sense of their world. Whether it be a chunky block, a pacifier, or a very handy thumb, sucking on something is an effective and easy way for a baby to not only explore but also self-soothe.

Should I Be Concerned?

But when thumb-sucking becomes the go-to habit as baby teeth begin to come in, parents often become concerned about how it will affect incoming teeth. Generally, most children cease thumb sucking between the age of two and four as they begin to find other means of self-soothing so it is not a major concern as permanent teeth have not yet come in. For some children, especially those who aggressively suck their thumb, it may affect the growth of the mouth and alignment of the teeth.

Kicking the Habit

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Thumb sucking can become a go-to habit as children become older and are feeling the need to ease anxiety. Help find other ways for your child to work through any anxieties or concerns they may have and offer alternative ways to find comfort. We can help offer encouragement during dental check-ups and share with older children what can happen to teeth to provide support to stop the habit.

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