Babies generally have the tendency to suck their thumb when they sleep or pick anything from the floor and eat it. However, many parents fail to realize that babies have their own coping mechanism as adults have. And what’s worse is that most parents would just go to the grocery store and pick up fancy pacifiers that may or may not help babies redirect themselves when they’re hungry or trying to sleep. Just to let everyone know, both thumb-sucking and pacifiers may be beneficial to babies at some point. But just like everything else in the world, everything always has an ending.
When to Stop a Baby from Thumb-Sucking and Using Pacifiers
Once thumb-sucking and using pacifier become a habit beyond 2 to 4 years of age, parents must find solutions on how to stop them as they can lead to the teeth misalignment and uneven shape of the mouth.
Effects of Thumb-Sucking and Pacifiers
There are many effects to a child’s oral health if thumb-sucking and using pacifiers are not regulated. The following are problems a parent will encounter if the habit is not corrected:
Thumb-Sucking
⦁ Crooked teeth or misaligned teeth
⦁ Broken front teeth
⦁ Increased risk of ear infection
⦁ Prolonged sucking habits that can be hard to break
Using Pacifiers
⦁ Nipple confusion
⦁ Increased risk of ear infection
⦁ Susceptibility to different diseases when pacifiers fall to ground and not cleaned
⦁ Teeth problems after prolonged use
What to Consider
If the habit of thumb-sucking and using pacifier lead to different problems, consider redirecting your child to better alternatives such as playing or using behavioral chart. This will help decrease the chance of your child having behavior and teeth problems in the future. However, if the habit continues and causes issues with the teeth, finding a dentist for orthodontic treatment is advised. Search for “dentist near me” on the internet to find the best dental professional there is.