Your child's primary teeth may appear to be perfectly aligned. However, when the adult teeth erupt, you may notice problems with the placement of the teeth. Sometimes, an alignment problem is a hereditary condition. However, it can also be caused by other influences. Here are a few things that can have a negative impact on the alignment of your child's adult teeth and cause them to need braces in the future:


A child can begin sucking his or her thumb while he or she is still in the mother's womb. The practice seems innocent enough. However, it can wreak havoc on tooth alignment.

The constant pressure of the thumb resting between the teeth can force a permanent gap where the anterior top and bottom teeth should meet. This is gap is often caused by the failure of the teeth to fully erupt. Since thumb sucking often occurs before and during the eruption of the permanent teeth, it may apply enough opposing force to the erupting anterior teeth to prevent full eruption.

In addition, pressure against the roof of the mouth can be strong enough that it alters the development of the growing upper jaw. Changes to the child's palate can also affect his or her bite and dental alignment.

Using a Pacifier Too Long

A pacifier can have an effect similar to thumb-sucking. However, since a pacifier is more pliable than a thumb, orthodontic damage may be less severe. In addition, there are various types of pacifiers , such as orthodontic pacifiers, available to discourage the misalignment of growing teeth.

Orthodontic pacifiers are flat near the base and on the bottom of the nipple, but they are bubbled toward the top end that rests against the child's upper palate. This shape helps support the proper development of the child's mouth. In addition, it allows the pacifier's nipple to flatten in a manner similar to the flattening of a mother's nipple during breastfeeding when the child sucks.


If one of your child's teeth requires extraction before the adult tooth is ready to erupt, it can allow teeth to shift out of position. The resulting misalignment can affect the remaining primary teeth. However, the primary teeth are placeholders for the permanent teeth. Thus, your child's adult teeth can be affected as well.

There are multiple reasons that a child's teeth can be crooked. However, misalignment can sometimes be avoided. To learn more ways that you can help prevent the improper shifting of your child's teeth and to see if your child may require braces, schedule a consultation with an orthodontist in your area.

To learn more, contact a company like Braces Inc.