Thumbsucking is a normal habit for infants. It provides comfort and can help young children sleep. However, as children get older, thumbsucking loses its normalcy and can actually be a source of suffering down the line.
Not only are school-aged thumbsuckers an easy target for teasing from other children, thumbsuckers can damage their teeth and cause an overbite. Breaking the thumbsucking habit early can mean the difference between an expensive corrective treatment like braces and normal development. Though most children stop sucking their thumbs by the time they go to preschool and before their permanent teeth grow in, some children continue to suck their thumbs into their school years. Some experts recommend correcting thumbsucking before a child turns 3, though the American Dental Association recommends breaking the habit after the child turns 4.
Breaking the Habit
Praise Good Behavior
Cover the Hand at Night
Bring in the Experts
Use a Bad-Tasting, Safe Nail Polish
Dedicated and Passionate Family Dentists
If you have questions about your child’s dental health, or if you’re concerned about your child’s thumbsucking habits, you don’t have to worry alone. Though thumbsucking is a habit that typically goes away during childhood, severe thumbsucking can affect even permanent teeth.
To schedule a family dentistry appointment in Spokane Valley with Drs. Ken and Marnie Collins at Collins Dentistry & Aesthetics, please call (509) 927-2273 today.