Dentist in Encinitas, CA – How To Detect Bad Dental Habits

While it’s possible to fix your teeth and gums at any age, getting an early start is ideal, not only for setting up a lifetime of great hygiene, but also detecting bad habits that are negatively affecting your child’s future dental health. Our dentist in Encinitas, CA, explains what these are and how to address them. 

Why Early Evaluations?

Having your child’s dental health evaluated early (usually before the age of 7, when permanent teeth begin erupting) can be beneficial to long-term dental health. Our dentist can determine whether there is enough space for teeth to grow in, if your child has extra teeth, crowding of the teeth, or bite problems. 

Bad Habits

Some bad habits directly cause dental issues, such as:

  • Thumb sucking – this habit should fade between the ages of 2 and 4. However, some children continue thumb sucking after this age, causing structural changes in their teeth and jaw. The pressure of the thumb can force the bite apart, leading to an open bite.
  • Tongue thrusting – this is a condition where the tongue is constantly pushed up against the front teeth. It can also lead to abnormal bite and cause problems with speaking.
  • Mouth breathing – constantly breathing with the mouth open can lead to abnormalities in the structure of the face and facial muscles as well as abnormal jaw growth. 

How Evaluations Help

Establishing care for your child lays the groundwork for good oral hygiene and monitoring of possible dental issues. Taking care of these bad habits and addressing dental problems early prevents serious problems later down the road and is easier and less painful since the bones haven’t fused in the mouth yet. Additionally, any surgeries that may be necessary to correct jaw problems or facial deformities are better tolerated and less painful for children.

Contact Our Dentist in Encinitas, CA, For More Information

To get in contact with our friendly team at McElroy Smile by Design, call our Encinitas office today at 760-237-0648!

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Our 5-star rated Encinitas CA dentist, Dr. McElroy, offers the most advanced dental care for children and dental care for adults. Our ental care and treatment options include teeth cleanings, pain-free dental care, children’s dental care, dental bonding, veneers, teeth whitening services, dental crowns, dental bridges, root canals, dentures, dental implants, gum therapy treatment, dental emergencies, Invisalign, wisdom teeth removals, TMJ treatment, teeth grinding, sleep apnea treatment, treatment for snoring and athletic mouthguards.
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