About us

A little bit about us …

Can you say OR-O-FA-CIAL MY-OL-O-GIST? That’s right, Orofacial Myologist. Quite a mouthful, isn’t it? (Pun totally intended.)

You can call me Carla.

Orofacial Myologists examine and treat the muscles of the face and mouth. Our job is to ensure harmony in the function of these muscles.

Why is this so important?
Its so kids can grow up with healthy smiles and beautiful faces.

Pretty cool huh?

There’s a reason I'm so passionate about helping these kids…

As a Dental Hygienist, I’ve always had a passion for prevention. So when I couldn’t find a solution for my own daughter’s thumb sucking habit, I wanted to create one.

And so began a journey of many years of work and research into the area of digit sucking habits.

I opened Thumbsucking Clinic in 2011, the first clinic of its kind in Australia.

I understand that parents want to know what they can do to prevent teeth problems early. This is why Thumbsucking Clinic takes a ‘whole child’ approach.

After all, a health body and a well mind is part of having a beautiful smile.

We’re here to help families

Our Clinic gives kids the right tools and confidence they need to kick their thumb sucking habit.

We also have information for parents to help kids quit their habit.

Thumb and finger sucking isn’t always a cute little habit.

In some cases, if a child has an oral habit for too long, it can cause:

  • problems with jaw and face growth
  • crowding and orthodontic problems
  • chewing, eating and speech difficulties
  • problems with posture
  • problems with the growth of the mouth and airways
  • difficulties with nose breathing
  •  an increased need for orthodontic treatment

The Team

Carla LejarragaDirector

Is our approach right for you?

Do you want to know:

Then you’re in the right place!

At Thumb Sucking Clinic, we take a unique approach to a common habit. We examine each child as an individual because….hey! No child is the same, right? As a mother myself, I know that your child is special. And their habit is too.

That’s why, at your child’s first appointment, I look at lots of different things. It’s not just about your child’s teeth and mouth.

As a mother myself, I know that you child is special.

This shows us the way to move forward so we can create a personalised treatment plan that’s right for them.

Our hands-on approach is fun and exciting for kids. Not only do we understand why they suck, we talk to them about their habit in a way that no-one else has been able to before.I

Carla Lejarraga


Carla is a sought-after speaker for national and international professional conferences. Her research on oral habits was on published in 2015 in International Dental Journal. The results showed a high rate in the closing of open-bite and overjet in patients, as well as the high success rate of her program.

When Carla’s not working at Thumbsucking Clinic, she mentors and trains health professionals.

She lives with her 4 children, 2 dogs, one cat, and a very understanding husband. Carla has a not-so-secret passion for live theatre, tropical plants and great red wine. Her favourite thing to do is hang out with family and friends on the back patio of her home in balmy Townsville.


  • Bachelor Applied Health Science (Oral Health) UQ 2000
  • Registered Dental Professional with AHPRA
  • Member of the Dental Hygienist Association Australia
  • Co-founder, former VP and member of The Australian Association of Orofacial Myology