It’s no secret that dental professionals know A LOT about facial structure and our technical skills really are incomparable. I mean, we can drill into a tooth by simply looking at the reflection of a mirror the size of a thumbnail, reduce a kid’s anxiety by singing them 400 Disney songs, all the while still somehow managing to keep the field of vision free of blood and saliva. That’s not an easy feat.
Since our extraordinary multitasking skills and technical capabilities give the circus a run for their money, you think we’d be able to give advice on something as simple as thumb or finger sucking … right? Unfortunately, not.
Even though oral habits can cause some of the most difficult orthodontic problems to treat, we just don’t get much training in this area at university (myself included). This even extends to Registered Dental Hygienists, whose role and passion is in the prevention of dental problems.
Just think for a moment. If a patient asked you about their child’s thumb sucking habits, how would you respond? Maybe give some vague suggestions, a few Dr Google recommendations? It’s certainly no fault of our own. While we’re desperate to help, the lack of training and knowledge acquired during our university years makes it tricky. It becomes especially difficult when parents have tried, what we consider, “everything.” Because according to the (not very high quality) evidence in treatment of oral, the only step we’re usually aware of is “appliance therapy,” you know, those orthodontic plates with spikes and grills that deter the thumb or finger from touching a plate. Yes, that one. And a big no, no in my book.
There are so many other ways to treat children with thumb sucking habits, but as the saying goes, “you can’t treat what you don’t know about!” That’s why I created my training for clinicians to teach not only how to treat oral habits but to assist professionals in finding out why they’re happening in the first place.
So, what are you waiting for? Click here to download my free Kickstart Guide for health professionals designed to teach you how to begin seeing kids with oral habits in YOUR practice. Yes, you read that correctly, free!