Will Thumb Sucking Cause My Child To Need Braces?

Jun 22, 2022 | Braces

Thumb sucking is very common in young children. However, past that age parents need to know that this habit could alter the alignment of their child’s teeth and jaw. It is better to consider a consultation. Make an appointment at Auburn Lakes Orthodontics in spring, Texas. 

How Can Thumb Sucking Cause My Child to Need Braces? 

In some children, thumb and finger sucking past the age of five can cause different problems. A few are as follows:

Teeth Alignment 

The most common sign that a child sucks their thumb is the changes in the front teeth. The sucking of the thumb can sauce the upper front teeth to extend forward. The constant pressure in the mouth it can cause the lower front teeth to come forward. 


Thumb sucking can change the shape of your child’s jaw. The upper jaw can narrow, which won’t match the bottom jaw. A cross bite may occur as the upper, and lower teeth don’t fit. An open bite can also occur as the upper teeth don’t match the bottom creating an opening between the teeth.  


A child’s speech can be affected by an open bite. The straight front teeth help pronounce letters like “s” and “z” sounds. If untreated with speech therapy and orthodontic treatment the lisp can remain into adulthood.  

Face Shape 

The shape of one’s jaw influences the shape of one’s face. An overbite where the upper teeth are pushed forward to accommodate the thumb is likely to change the overall shape and look of a child’s face.

How To Stop My Child From Sucking Their Thumb Or Fingers? 

Breaking any habit isn’t easy. To help your child stop their thumb-sucking habit, you can try a few of the following tactics: 

  • Try to remind your child to take their hand out. Consider asking them positively.   
  • Offer a reward to your child if they stop sucking their thumb for a specific time  
  • Wearing gloves will help the child remember not to put their hand in their mouth 
  • Apply nail polish on their hand and encourage them not to damage them by putting their hand in their mouth  
  • Try to keep them busy.  
  • Apply a sour-tasting liquid to their fingers 
  • For older kids, an orthodontic plate may stop their habit if the plate has taken up the space. 

 If you believe your child could benefit from a thumb-sucking appliance, click here to schedule a free consultation with our orthodontist near you at Auburn Lakes Orthodontics in Spring, Texas. 

How Braces Can Help? 

The jaw and teeth get misaligned caused by thumb sucking. This can be corrected with braces. It is probably better to stop the problem before the adult teeth emerge. If the jaw shape is altered an orthodontist may recommend starting early treatments. At Auburn Lakes Orthodontics Spring, Texas we provide modern, state-of-the-art orthodontic services.

Orthodontist In Spring, TX 

If you have concerns about your child’s thumb-sucking habit, Contact us today to speak to an orthodontist near you in Spring, Texas. Our experts will run a thorough dental exam of your child’s teeth, and we’ll be able to tell you if the habit has caused any long-term problems.