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Although it may seem natural for children to want to suck their thumbs, the truth is that it can seriously alter and hinder their oral health and should be discouraged when signs of the bad habit begin to show themselves. The basics of thumb sucking prevention begin with helping your child whenever possible. Here are some other facts and tips about thumb sucking:

– Children can slow and delay the growth of their teeth by thumb sucking.
– If your child continues to suck their thumb past an unhealthy age, their pediatrician can prescribe a foul-tasting substance to place on their thumbs to discourage thumb sucking.
– Thumb sucking can cause malocclusions and alter the alignment of teeth in a child’s mouth.
– Although many individuals may see pacifiers as a positive alternative to thumb sucking, the truth is that pacifiers can wreak the same type of havoc on the alignments of a smile.
– Children often rely on thumb sucking as a security blanket to help them with security issues. Always strive to build confidence in your child, and praise them when they do not suck their thumbs.
– Thumb sucking can also introduce outside bacteria to a child’s mouth, which can increase their likelihood of tooth decay and gum disease.

Always make time in your life to visit your pediatrician at Treasured Smiles Children’s Dentistry, Duane C. Clouse, PC for a bi-annual professional cleaning, and if necessary, to book an appointment with Dr. Duane C. Clouse for a detailed exam of your oral health. You can reach our pediatric office in Maricopa, Arizona, by calling us at 520-316-6111. Let us help your child get a whiter, brighter smile today!