Here at Victoria Onesty, DDS & Scott H. Leaf, DDS, we are dedicated to your children’s oral health.
We all know how soothing pacifiers can be for small infants. Pacifiers can comfort them and help them fall asleep. As parents take away the pacifiers, we often see thumb and finger sucking start. This is quite natural but can be harmful to children’s mouths.
Excessive sucking can cause the front teeth to come in crooked. If the sucking continues, your children’s bites may be off. Their jaws and bones may not grow properly and require extensive dental care to fix (if that is even possible).
To help your children stop these habits, you need to be very watchful. Reward them for not sucking their thumbs, especially in stressful situations. If you have a very anxious child, you need to find other ways to help him or her deal with anxiety.
Many parents place their children’s fingers in socks to stop the sucking. In bad cases, a dentist can help. There are mouthpieces that discourage sucking, or we can prescribe a medication to put right on the thumb.