Cleft Palate and Lip
Sometimes a baby can be born with either a cleft palate, a cleft lip or even both. These are birth defects that can result in a split in either the lip or the palate of the baby. They can evolve in early fetal development and are either a result from exposures that the mother endured during her pregnancy or as a result of genetics. The split remains unsealed unless a surgical procedure is conducted on the baby.
Complications of a Cleft Palate or Cleft Lip:
• Difficulty eating, drinking or swallowing
• Difficulty with speech articulation
• Reoccurring ear infections
• Misaligned teeth
How Are the Teeth Affected?
A defect of either affliction can affect both the baby teeth and the development of the adult teeth with regards to their size, position in the mouth and shape. As the split typically occurs between the cuspid and lateral incisors, often these are the teeth that are most affected.
Proper Care for Those with a Cleft
A child who is born with either or both of these defects can still maintain a proper oral health regime that will leave him or her with a healthy smile. Schedule a visit with the best dentist in Bay Shore before his or her first birthday so that your dentist can discuss with you the best ways to care for your child’s oral cavity.
Treatment of Children with One Or More Ailments
Surgical procedures are typically preformed on those born with either defect within three to six months of age. It is important, as a parent, to feed your child a balanced, nutritious diet and be involved in his or her daily oral hygiene routine.
It is possible that after surgery your child will need to have corrective appliances through the different stages of growth. These appliances will help with both cosmetic and health issues that may occur as a result of the defect and the surgery.
A cleft palate is a common affliction to many babies born in the United States and is treatable. The best strategy for parents is to be mindful and discuss with their child’s dentist the proper procedures to practice the best oral care habits for their child’s special needs.