Poor oral habits include a wide range of habits such as, thumb sucking, pacifier use, finger sucking, nail biting, etc. These habits can alter the facial structure in a negative way. Thumb sucking is the most widely recognized oral habit that affect the growth of the jaws and teeth. The long-term position of the thumb in the mouth pushes the upper front teeth forward and the lower front teeth backward. These non-nutritive habits can apply pressure against oral structures, creating a disruption of normal muscle patterns. Swallowing, speaking, and dental development may also be affected.
Habit elimination is the first step before starting myofunctional therapy. A positive and motivating program is designed to ensure your child's success. Children around 5 years of age is an ideal time to begin a program to help eliminate harmful sucking habits.