Poor oral habits such as tongue thrusting or thumb sucking can cause serious damage to the development of your child’s teeth and jaws. Dr. Robert Montoya may recommend a tongue crib to help break these habits and prevent further damage to your child’s oral growth and development. Contact Montoya Orthodontics at 817-427-2237 for more information about tongue cribs in Keller, Texas, and make your child’s appointment with our orthodontist.

Tongue cribs are an appliance designed to stop thumb and finger sucking and tongue thrusting habits. While most children will stop these poor oral habits on their own, some children may continue sucking their fingers or thrusting their tongue, causing complications in the growth and development of their teeth and jaws.

Tongue cribs consist of two bands and wires that for a type of gate within the mouth. This gate reminds the child not to put his or her thumb or fingers in the mouth, and to keep the tongue back when they swallow. Tongue cribs are cemented in place and cannot be removed. The length of time your child will need to use this appliance will depend on the severity of the problem and how long it takes to correct it.

It is normal for your child’s tongue to feel sore for a few days while he or she adjusts to the tongue cribs. You can give your child mild pain relievers and anti-inflammatories (such as ibuprofen) as needed. While wearing the tongue crib, help your child to avoid hard, sticky foods, as well as foods high in sugar. Also help them to practice good oral hygiene – keeping both the teeth and the appliance (including the bands and the gate) clean is important in avoiding cavities and other dental problems.

If the bands or the appliance itself become bent, loose, or break, please contact our office immediately.

To learn more about tongue cribs, and to make your appointment with our orthodontist, please call our practice today.