Thumb sucking is normal for babies and toddlers. In fact, it is seen as a natural, healthy reflex that makes the baby feel comfortable and safe. However, once your child's permanent teeth are in, thumb suction can cause serious problems with proper mouth development and tooth alignment.
Knowing when and how to stop thumb sucking is the key to preventing long-term damage. You can also browse online to find out about the ways of how to stop finger sucking in children.
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Many children usually stop sucking their own thumbs, usually around the age of six or seven months or between the ages of two and four. However, if thumb suction continues, experts recommend taking steps to limit behavior before a child's permanent teeth enter – which usually occurs around the age of six.
Side effects of the thumb sucking
Possible side effects of thumb sucking includes:
One of the most serious long-term effects of thumb sucking is improper occlusion or misalignment of teeth. These include open bites, which occur when the lower and upper front teeth do not fuse with the closed mouth, and excess bites when the upper front teeth overlap with the lower front teeth.
Thumb sucking can negatively affect speech in a number of ways. Constant thumb sucking results in less time spent learning and practicing language, which can hinder the development of the oral motor skills necessary for speaking.
Our hands are always filled with germs. When children suck their thumbs, they put all the germs on their hands right in their mouths. This can make the child sick more often.