25 Jul 2022

All About Habit Breaking Appliances

Parents often worry about their kids sucking their thumb or using a pacifier. While these habits are normal in infants, specific patterns like thumb sucking and tongue thrusting can continue beyond the early years. As a result, an improper bite can occur. Other habits like nail biting, lip biting or mouth breathing can also impact their oral health as they grow up. Therefore, parents often seek help from the best dental hospital in Hyderabad to reduce these unhealthy oral habits. Special appliances are designed and manufactured to control such routine practices, known as habit-breaking appliances.

What is a Habit-Breaking Appliance?

You can visit any dental clinics in Hyderabad to support your child in improving their oral habits. However, knowing more about the habit-breaking appliance will help you, as a parent, stay more informed on the subject, and you can make better decisions for your child. Habit-breaking appliances are available in two different varieties – removable and fixed ones. For tongue thrusting or thumb sucking, many dentists recommend a fixed habit-breaking appliance as they are more effective, and the success doesn’t depend on whether your child wears the device. Usually, dentists at the top dental hospital in Hyderabad will
leave the appliance for 12 months to ensure the habit is completely broken.

The habit-breaking appliance is made using a thin metal wire, and it’s bonded to the molars behind the teeth. The appliance isn’t visible when your child smiles and doesn’t interfere with eating. In most habit-breaking appliances, there is a tongue crib to block the tongue or finger from contacting the back of the teeth or the palate, and it takes away the enjoyment or comfort factor for the child. As most children unconsciously indulge in these habits when they are either upset or tired, having the appliance in their mouth reminds them to break the habit.

Why Do Children Need a Habit-Breaking Appliance?

If poor oral habits persist beyond the age of 5 years, it can result in the upper front teeth flaring out and the lower teeth moving inward and back. These habits can also hold back your child’s lower jaw growth. In addition, there are chances of malformation of the upper palate, which can also result in the upper jaw being thrust forward. Similarly, some children have misaligned teeth and an anterior open bite. In such cases, the front teeth fail to close together, leading to the upper jaw’s collapse.

Using a habit-breaking appliance, you can stop the harmful behaviours at an appropriate time without leading to further damage.

What to Expect from a Habit-Breaking Appliance?

When you choose a habit-breaking appliance for your child, it’s best to get it placed by an orthodontist as they are experts in preventing malocclusion. In addition, the device is completely painless and doesn’t cause any hurt or trouble to wear regularly. Yet, until your child’s tongue gets used to sharing the space with the appliance, it may result in some discomfort, tongue soreness and speech issues. But this is just temporary.

Remember, children are used to thumb sucking to comfort themselves and having a habit-breaking appliance can result in a little cranky behaviour for a few days. They may even experience trouble while sleeping. But children are incredibly flexible and agile and will soon develop new coping mechanisms to soothe themselves.

If you’re looking for a dental clinic near me, Secunderabad Dental Hospital is one of the top 10 dental hospitals in Hyderabad, offering habit-breaking appliances. Our orthodontists understand your child’s habits and help you with a suitable device to ensure their long-term oral health and well-being.

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