Long-term non-nutritive sucking habits can also mal-form the oral structure. You may notice an imbalance of the face or lips? Maybe when your child bites together their front teeth may have an open gap (anterior open bite) these are all implications of the continuation of thumb or dummy sucking.
It is natural for infants to explore with their mouth and generally the infant will eliminate the pacifier or thumb at around 18months – 2 years of age once solid food foods are introduced and other mouth play is encouraged. However, this is not always the case, and should the sucking continue on, adverse implications are possible and intervention should be considered, when considering using the thumb sucking/ Pacifier program we will always ensure your child is ready see Thumbsucking/Pacifier Program for more information.
It’s important to remember that treatment is not just focused on children, adults also benefit from the cessation of these above habits and those such as cheek biting, lip biting & pen biting which lead to muscle imbalance.