Your child’s early oral development — including speech patterns, premature tooth loss, and sucking habits — can permanently impact their smile’s shape as an adult. 

Dental Appliances and Growth Modification

Though many parents think of teens using dental appliances, the use of such appliances in younger children could be very beneficial and effective when the treatment is timed according to each child’s growth.

Before a child has all of his or her adult teeth, some dental appliances may be recommended for injury prevention, while others may be utilized for treatment of space maintenance or habit correction just to name a few. Our Belmont pediatric dentist will evaluate your child’s growth pattern to discuss with you if any early orthodontic intervention may benefit your child’s oral health.

Oral Habit Impact on Development

It is not uncommon to see children sucking on their thumbs, fingers, pacifiers, sippy cups, and similar items for comfort. Other children bite nails, cheeks, pens, or lick their lips for self-soothing or other reasons. These oral habits, when repeated frequently over a prolonged period of time, could have a lasting effect on a child’s oral and/or dental development. Since no two children’s oral habits are the same, please discuss with our pediatric dentist if you have questions regarding your child’s habit—we can customize a plan for intervention that fits your child and family’s needs.

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