Even during the time that baby teeth are developing, kids can start to exhibit signs of bad biting habits. These habits start in childhood but can progress into adulthood, which can eventually have an effect on your child’s long-term oral health. You can prevent your child from developing these habits by knowing what to look for.
Bad Biting Habits
A few of the most common childhood biting habits include:
- Biting the fingernails – Nail biting is an unsanitary habit that can also cause damage to your teeth and oral health. A child with a nail-biting habit risks cracking and chipping the teeth and introducing harmful bacteria into the mouth.
- Gnawing on clothing – A common childhood biting problem is when children chew on the sleeves and neck fabric of their clothing. This can cause damage to the teeth and your child’s wardrobe. Distraction is a good way to break this habit, so when you notice your child gnawing on his or her shirt, try to divert attention elsewhere.
- Chewing pens or pencils – Once your child starts school, a nervous chewing habit may begin with pens or pencils or may be transferred to pens and pencils. If you can’t stop your child from this habit, you may want to look into products created to go on the ends of pens and pencils made for children with chewing habits. These chewing products are safer for your child’s teeth and mouth.
Bad habits that develop in childhood are much more likely to follow a child into adulthood and prove very difficult to break. If you notice that your child is exhibiting any of the above biting habits, work on breaking them early. Because these habits are often a response to stress, try to determine what could be causing stress for your child and eliminate these stressors.
To make an appointment for the whole family to receive a dental cleaning and an exam, please contact Severance Dental. Our family dental office is located in Severance, Colorado.