What is a Tongue Crib?
Some children can adopt harmful habits like thumb sucking and tongue thrusting which can lead to poor teeth arrangement, speech problems, and unnatural swallowing patterns. For these reasons, Dr. Rush Davidson and the team at Empire Orthodontics use a tongue crib appliance to discourage these bad habits and prevent poor oral and dental health.
The tongue crib is comprised of metal bars that run behind the upper front teeth and is attached to the upper molars. A tongue crib can be removable or fixed. A removable type is typically given to children who are compliant and will wear it regularly at the specified time. Removing the crib helps the child to clean their mouth and appliance, to prevent food stagnation and gum problems. A fixed crib is given to children who are physically/mentally challenged or younger children who may not be compliant with instructions.
How a Tongue Crib Works
To successfully break these habits, Dr. Davidson could advise your child to use the tongue crib regularly for months to a year depending on the severity of the habit. Tongue thrusting is a condition where the tongue is pushed into the teeth when swallowing. This symptom can cause misalignment of teeth over a long period and can affect your child’s ability to speak, eat and swallow. A tongue crib retrains the tongue to regain normal position and function and when caught early, can help prevent pushing teeth out of line. We can also use this orthodontic appliance to prevent future orthodontic issues caused by thumb sucking, which also affects the alignment of teeth.
During treatment, you will visit our clinic regularly throughout the treatment to ensure that your child’s appliance is adjusted as needed to maintain a healthy bite and a straight smile. Through customized, high-quality care, our board-certified orthodontist, Dr. Rush Davidson, and staff will work with your child to realize their best smile. To learn more about the tongue crib, or other orthodontic services, contact one of our offices in Beavercreek or West Chester to schedule a free consultation.