Breaking habits that affect dental health is crucial for maintaining a beautiful smile and preventing long-term damage. Here at State Street Dental, we offer habit breaking treatments to help your child overcome habits such as thumb sucking, finger sucking and tongue thrusting, which can all negatively impact oral health.

Thumb and finger sucking is common in children under 4 years old, with most children stopping on their own between ages 2 and 4. However, if these habits persist, they can cause significant dental issues such as open bites, horizontal overlaps of the front teeth and crossbites. Similarly, tongue thrusting, which involves the constant pressure of the tongue against the teeth during swallowing, speaking and resting, can push teeth and dental arches out of alignment.

To help break these habits, our dentist and team offer a range of oral appliances designed specifically for this purpose. Thumb-sucking appliances are intended to discourage the habit, while tongue thrust appliances often incorporate a type of “physical therapy” to retrain the muscles of the tongue, preventing it from thrusting forward. When you bring your child to our office, our experienced dentist will work closely with you to address these harmful habits, ensuring your child can enjoy optimal oral health and a beautiful smile.

In addition to using oral appliances, Dr. Gregory Davis may recommend some simple at-home strategies. These can include placing an article of clothing, such as a glove or sock, over the thumb and fingers, or creating diversions during times when your child typically engages in these habits. Often, children suck their fingers due to anxiety, and identifying and addressing the source of this anxiety can also be beneficial.

We understand that breaking these habits can be challenging, but with the right support and intervention, it is entirely possible. For more information about habit breaking treatment in Boise, Idaho, and to schedule a consultation with our dentist, please call State Street Dental at 208-939-1700. Together, we can help your child achieve and maintain excellent oral health.