Link Between Speech Concerns and Dental Issues
After a baby is born, it is so exciting to enjoy and show off any milestones as they occur. Nothing is more thrilling than hearing a baby babble for the first time. As time moves along, it’s not uncommon for many toddlers to experience some form of speech impediment or delay. It can become frustrating to determine if there is any need for concern and who to speak to when seeking to understand the root of the problem. Many people aren’t aware, but there are a number of speech difficulties that can be caused by dental issues.
When thinking about how we speak, it’s interesting to learn how many of your body parts play a role. The concept of speech is a complex process where many issues can come into play. Speech can be impacted by a multitude of body and developmental functions, such as hearing issues, nerve and muscle control, the brain’s processing ability, and birth defects, not to mention the tongue, lips, vocal cords, nasal cavity, and the placement of the teeth and jaw bones.
There are a number of dental issues that can affect the development and sound of speech:
This condition restricts the tongue’s range of motion due to an unusually thick, short, or tight piece of skin that is holding the tongue to the floor of the mouth. Although primarily seen in newborns, children with this condition may develop speaking, eating, and swallowing issues.
This is the habit of pushing the tongue against the front teeth when speaking or swallowing. It is also common for tongue thrusters to stick their tongue out when speaking. This needs to be corrected before orthodontic treatment can begin.
Children who are long-time thumbsuckers or pacifier users are prone to seeing this develop. Malocclusion relates to the bite and alignment of the teeth when the mouth is closed. It can be seen in various forms such as overbite, underbite, crossbite, and open bite.
If your child or loved one is suffering from a speech impediment that you feel may be related to a dental issue, please contact our office located in Kewaskum, WI to schedule an appointment today. We can give your loved one a thorough examination and make a plan for the next step. We look forward to seeing you soon!