It is often said that things should be done in moderation, and this sensible approach may well apply to pacifier use among babies. Chronic pacifier use has been linked with adverse effects on the structures of the oral cavity. Perhaps the most common of these is an “anterior open bite,” characterized by an obvious gap between the upper front and lower front teeth when the jaw is closed. As a result, the back teeth touch but the front teeth do not. Another potential malocclusion that has been linked with prolonged pacifier use is “posterior crossbite”, in which the upper back teeth are positioned inside the lower back teeth. These potential bite problems may be averted with restricted pacifier use.
Orthodontic treatment in young children is known as interceptive orthodontics. Intervention may begin as early as age 6 or 7. At this age, teeth are still developing. The jaw is still growing. That means certain conditions, such as crowding, may be easier to address. To schedule a free orthodontic consultation, please call Fredericksburg Orthodontics & Invisalign Center at 540-898-7211. We are located at 10618 Spotsylvania Ave. (Lee’s Hill Center on Rt. 1 South). Our hours are Monday through Friday with evening appointments available.
Pacifier use beyond age five can delay the front baby teeth from falling out at a normal time, which in turn can hinder emergence of adult teeth.