Thumb sucking is placing the thumb into the mouth and steadily and repeatedly sucking it for an extended duration. Babies have a tendency to instinctively suck any item that is put into their mouths. This tendency develops due to breastfeeding and also due to the soothing feeling they get by sucking.
Thumb sucking has the potential to cause several problems in the development of the teeth. If the child stops the thumb sucking before the permanent teeth start to erupt, then no harm is done to the teeth, gums or jaws. If the habit continues until the age of 6 or 8 however, and the development of the permanent teeth begin, it can then be damaging and may affect the shape of the oral cavity and the structure of the teeth. Also you can get easy Dentist Advice About Oral Health Care.
In order to stop children from thumb sucking, the following are some tips provided by Oral Health Care Specialist:
- Instead of scolding the child for sucking the thumb, the child should be commended when they refrain from doing it
- Some children start sucking their thumb when they feel insecure or need comfort from the adults. In these situations, you should try to comfort the child and remove the cause of insecurity
- Boredom can also be a cause, divert the attention of the child towards something interesting and distracting
- Other children who are older can also a play a role in helping the child to get rid of the habit
- A pediatric dentist can help greatly
- The child should be encouraged to stop, and to assist with this, a bandage can be applied to the thumb or a glove or sock can be worn
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