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Oral habits are absolutely normal!!!!!    Surprised???  

Yes, you read it right, oral habits are considered as a part of normal development of a child. Oral habits in children are completely normal forms of self-soothing and exploration of the environment. Oral habits until 3 years of age are considered normal. Oral habits that are prevalent well beyond the normal age frequently result in facial deformity and malocclusions.

We all have habits: things we do everyday often without consciously thinking. Some of them are good but not all of them. That’s why it’s important to prevent your child from developing harmful habits. Pacifier sucking, followed by thumb/finger sucking are the most common harmful habits in childhood. Childhood is the mirror which reflects the propensities of adulthood.


Trident of factors, like duration of the habit per day, degree and intensity of habit are responsible for any habit to produce detrimental and lasting effects. There are various reasons for developing thumb sucking habit, significant relationship exists between duration and intensity of thumb sucking and the amount of time spent in feeding sessions.


Thumb and finger sucking are believed to cause a number of changes in the dental arch and the supporting structures. Some of the effects of thumb sucking are:

  • Forward position of the upper and lower front teeth.
  • Increased horizontal gap between the upper and lower front teeth leading to increased overjet of teeth.
  • Increased vertical gap between the upper and lower front teeth leading to open bite.
  • Development of tongue thrusting habit, secondary to thumb sucking due to open bite.
  • Narrow dental arches
  • Smaller upper lip
  • Soft tissue lesion on the thumb/Deformation of the thumb
  • Short finger nail
  • Increased risk of trauma to upper front teeth, to psychological health, speech defect (Especially lisping), middle ear infection and enlarged tonsils.


If the child chooses this habit in the first year of his or her life, the parents should move away his or her thumb smoothly and attract the child’s attention to other things such as toys. After the second year of age, thumb sucking will decrease and will be appeared just in child’s bed or when he/she is tired. Some of the children who do not stop this habit, will give it up when their permanent teeth erupt, but there is a tendency for continuing the thumb sucking habit even until adult life.

The 5 steps are…..

  1. Direct interview with child if he/she is mature enough to understand
  2. Encouragement: This can give the child more pride and self-confidence
  3. Reward system: There is more involvement of the child
  4. Reminder therapy which includes schemical and mechanical approach
  5. Orthodontic appliance


Initially awareness of the habit: the extent, the consequences and the benefit of cessation of the habit has to be explained to the child. Dental changes due to thumb and finger sucking do not need any treatment if the habit stopped before the 5 years of age and as soon as giving up the habit, dental changes will be corrected spontaneously. The success of any habit interception procedure largely depends upon the child’s co-operation and willingness to be helped to discontinue his/her thumb sucking habit. Thus the parents and the dentist should seek to motivate the child, and not to frighten and scold the child. Use of chemical approach is an age old method and it has shown to be less effective. Placing bitter tasting or foul smelling preparation on the thumb that is sucked can make the habit distasteful.

The use of mechanical aids are basically reminding appliances that assist the child who is willing to quit the habit but is not able to do so as the habit has entered the subconscious level. These appliances usually consist of a frame work placed palatal to the upper front teeth. The frame is placed exactly where the child places the thumb. Its raised rigid design keeps the thumb from laying snugly against the palate. The appliance is either removable or fixed. Other aids that can be used to intercept the habit include bandaging the thumb, bandaging of the elbow, wearing long sleeve sleeping gown. Once the habit affects the permanent teeth the damage is irreversible, which requires orthodontic intervention.

In today’s highly stressed environment, school/college going kids are subjected to various kinds of pressure/stress in different forms. Oral habit can be a form of distressing. Parents should play the role of friend, emotional support and a guide to the child rather than shamming or nagging them. If the habit is causing a dental problem, it is the privilege and responsibility of the dentist to work with the child and parents toward a resolution of the problem.


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Dr K V Arun Consultant, MDS – Periodontist from Apollo WHITE Dental Spa, Chennai gives us a detail interview about use of microscope in the feild of dentistry and its advantages. He also answers the frequently asked doubts of patients regarding microscope dentistry.

What is Microscope Dentistry? (more…)


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The tooth consists of three layers. The outer layer is called enamel, the layer underlying the enamel is called the dentin and the innermost layer of the tooth is called the pulp. The pulp is the only living structure in the tooth. When the pulp is infected, a root canal treatment is to be performed to save the tooth. (more…)

Wisdom Teeth

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Problems with wisdom teeth

When there is not enough room in the jaw for wisdom teeth, it can stop them coming through properly. Brushing and flossing these teeth can be difficult. Food and bacteria can get stuck between the wisdom tooth and the tooth next to it, leading to tooth decay and gum infections.

Crowded wisdom teeth in the upper jaw often lean sideways and rub against the cheek. This may cause ulcers on the cheek and chewing problems. Wisdom teeth may also push the other teeth closer together and affect a person’s bite. (more…)

How to maintain your teeth white

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Whiter teeth  is something that many people in our country would desire today, whether you already have white teeth or you’ve just completed a whitening treatment, keep in mind that you’ve still got some work to do when it comes to preserving that beautiful, sparkling smile. You need to be thoughtful about how you treat your teeth if you want them to remain white. To help your teeth stay brighter for a longer period, follow these helpful tips.


Benefits of Microscope Dentistry

newThe value of high magnification in clinical medicine (via a surgical microscope) has been well known for more than 50 years. The value of high magnification in dentistry (via a dental operating microscope) has been well known for 20 years in endodontics, for 14 years in periodontics3 and for over 10 years in restorative dentistry.




What you eat and how often you eat can easily affect your development of tooth decay. Our teeth are covered with a sticky firm of bacteria called plaque. If your don’t clean your teeth after eating , plaque converts sugar and foods into acids that can attack your tooth enamel. It cannot be removed by our regular brushing and flossing, to prevent cavities and maintain good oral health, your diet — what you eat and how often you eat are important factors. Changes in your mouth start the minute you eat certain foods. Bacteria in the mouth convert sugars and carbohydrates from the foods you eat to acids, and it’s the acids that begin to attack the enamel on teeth, starting the decay process. The more often you eat and snack, the more frequently you are exposing your teeth to the cycle of decay.




People normally love to have straight aligned celebrity teeth, but not every one dream comes true . The most common way of teeth alignment is braces , people believes that braces is most effective treatment for aligning teeth.  One major disadvantage of wearing on braces is the discomfort and pain that dental patients usually experience when having braces installed. This is because of the metal frame is usually used when making the brace. It will run through the teeth and produce a sensitivity that will render the teeth prone to dental pain (more…)

Can gum disease affect your developing baby?

Most of the people will be terrified on hearing , your gum disease can affect the developing baby of pregnant mother .Many researchers have found out that periodontal disease in expectant mothers actually affects their unborn child to many different risks; particularly if they also happen to be diabetes sufferers.


Does green tea stains your teeth?


People who drinks green tea is only to  maintain their physical health, not many are aware that green tea affects their oral health. If your smile isn’t as bright as you’d like, think about what you put in your mouth.We know that coffee can stain those pearly whites, but does tea stain teeth? The answer is yes.