What should I do if my child sucks his thumb or uses a pacifier?

thumbsucking

Although many children suck their thumbs or fingers as infants, most grow out of the habit by the age of three without causing permanent damage. Pacifiers should be discontinued by the age of two. If your pediatric dentist notices damage occurring to the teeth or oral structures, make every effort to help your child stop sucking his or her thumb or fingers by the age of three or sooner. If your child continues sucking after adult teeth have come in, we may recommend a retainer appliance to help your child break the habit.