August 9, 2017
Your child has a lot of things in common with other kids his or her age — like a love of recess and the precise cutting requirements of a PB&J. And when it comes to their oral health, the similarities may even include habits like thumbsucking, mouth breathing, and tongue thrusting. Right now these little traits may seem harmless or even cute, but over time they will negatively affect the development of your child’s smile. Appliance therapy and/or early interceptive orthodontics from the Coral Gables dentist can help!
Tips for Breaking Bad Habits the Natural Way
Many people have good luck breaking habits the old fashioned way — training the child to stop thumb sucking, mouth breathing, tongue thrusting, etc. Before you visit your Coral Gables dentist, you may want to try these things at home.
- Talk to your child about the habit and help him or her understand how it is affecting their oral health. While the conversation may not really make much of a difference in retraining their habit, it’s a necessary starting point.
- You may have luck stopping thumbsucking by applying a bad-tasting solution to the thumbnail. It can work for some children, but many find a way around it.
- Having your child wear a glove while they sleep can help, too.
- Many kids suck their thumbs when they feel anxious or afraid. Consider the root of the issue and think about ways you can help them feel more comfortable at times they are likely to turn to their thumb.
If you have tried to break these habits at home but haven’t had any success, it’s time to visit your Coral Gables dentist, Dr. Bushdid.
If Nothing Else Helps, Try Oral Appliance Therapy
Your Coral Gables dentist is equipped with a number of tools to help your child break harmful oral habits. For tongue thrusters, a metal tongue thrusting device prevents the tongue from pressing against the front teeth. Your child is likely a tongue thruster if he or she pushes her tongue out to say “s” words, or if the front teeth do not meet together.
It’s especially important to treat mouth breathing, as the habit affects sleep and can take away from the amount of oxygen your child’s brain receives. Dr. Bushdid can fit your little one with a special mouth breathing device that widens the upper palate, opening up blocked sinuses and the nasal passage.
Interceptive orthodontics may be recommended alongside appliance therapy. When we intervene with issues like overbite, crossbite, and other alignment problems from an early age, we can limit future treatment times with orthodontics — or possibly even eliminate the need for braces altogether. And prevent suffering from TMJ/TMD problems in the future!
Schedule An Appointment Today!
If you are having trouble breaking your little one’s nagging oral habit, please don’t wait to seek help from Dr. Bushdid. We are happy to provide appliance therapy and early interceptive orthodontics as needed! Request an appointment for your little one at Bushdid Smiles today.
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