Posted on 06 January 2020

Although a common habit, a child should be weaned off thumb-sucking between the age of 5 to 6 years old. Thumb-sucking as the permanent teeth develop can lead to jaw and teeth issues which may require orthodontics.

Key takeaways:

  • Thumb-sucking when the permanent teeth come through can lead to crowded, crooked or protruding teeth.
  • An open bite can result from thumb-sucking, where there is a space between the upper and lower teeth when the jaw is at rest.
  • A child may require orthodontic treatment once they stop thumb-sucking to address teeth alignment issues.

"While thumb-sucking is normal and shouldn’t necessarily be discouraged, it can be a problem if your child doesn’t stop on their own past the age of five or six."

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