I’ve sucked my thumb my entire childhood and now that I’m an adult, I’m embarrassed by how much my teeth stick out. Is there something I can do as an adult to fix this?
It is normal for children to suck their thumbs and up until the age of around seven there is no permanent harm. It is when the habit continues after that where you end up needing some intervention to get the teeth back in the correct position.
I am surprised your pediatric dentist never addressed this. Though, it may be that your parents did not have you under the care of a dentist in your childhood.
I would start by speaking to a dentist who offers Invisalign. This will allow you to straighten your teeth without anyone knowing. There is no metal involved in the procedure at all. Instead, it uses clear aligners in order to guide your teeth back into their healthy, natural position.
Invisalign has another side benefit in that the aligners are able to double as teeth whitening trays. This gives you a mini smile makeover, enabling you to straighten and whiten your teeth at the same time, at a fraction of the cost.
For the benefit of those parents reading this. If you have a thumbsucker, often if you do not make a big deal out of this it will resolve itself. This often happens around school age when they don’t want to appear like a “baby” in front of their friends.
If your child is having trouble kicking the habit, there is a product, called Thum that allows you to place a non-toxic, bitter-tasting liquid on their thumbs, which is usually enough to help them kick the habit if that is what they want.
This blog is brought to you by Decatur, AL Dentists Drs. Drake and Wallace.