Understanding Mewing and Its Impact on Children's Oral Health - Oral Health - Medford Dentist - Medford Center

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Understanding Mewing and Its Impact on Children’s Oral Health

added on: July 7, 2024

Thanks to social media, new health trends can quickly become popular among kids and teenagers, and oftentimes without a clear understanding of potential consequences. One such trend is “mewing,” a technique that has gained traction online to supposedly improve facial aesthetics. However, it’s crucial for parents to understand that this viral trend might be affecting their child’s oral health and proper development. Today, we’ll explore the basics of mewing, its potential impacts on oral health, and when to consider professional guidance from a pediatric dentist in Medford.

What is Mewing?

Mewing is a technique that involves positioning the tongue against the roof of the mouth to supposedly improve facial structure. The concept was introduced by Dr. John Mew, an orthodontist, in the 1970s. Dr. Mew suggested that this technique could make the jaw appear more square and improve sleep. However, there is little evidence that these claims are true. This five-decade-old trend has recently become popular among kids and teenagers who are conscious about their facial aesthetics. 

How Mewing Affects Kids’ Oral Health

While mewing is claimed to enhance facial features, its effects on oral health, particularly in children, require careful consideration. Mewing can affect:

  • Tooth Alignment

Incorrect mewing can lead to tooth misalignment. If mewing causes or worsens misalignment, orthodontic treatments like braces might be necessary.

  • Jaw Development

Prolonged pressure on the roof of the mouth might affect jaw development and lead to pain or TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders. Interventions and treatments such as physical therapy or mouthguards may be recommended.

  • Gum Health

Incorrect tongue posture could put unnecessary pressure on the gums and negatively affect gum health. To help, your child’s dentist may need to perform simple cleanings or more intensive periodontal therapies.

It’s crucial for parents to understand these potential risks and monitor any self-administered techniques their children might be trying.

When to Consult a Pediatric Dentist

It’s essential for parents to consult a professional for accurate guidance and to address any adverse effects from mewing. If you notice any oral health issues with your child, possibly related to mewing or other practices, do not hesitate to contact a local pediatric dentist. Professional guidance is crucial to ensuring your child’s oral health is right. Here’s what a pediatric dentist in Medford can offer:

  • Oral Health Evaluations

Your child should visit the dentist at least twice yearly for dental checkups and cleanings. These bi-annual visits also allow your dentist to evaluate your child’s overall oral health, including development. 

  • Customized Treatment Plans

A pediatric dentist can provide personalized advice and customized treatment plans tailored to your child’s needs. 

  • Preventive Guidance

Your dentist isn’t there only twice a year to evaluate your child’s oral health and clean teeth. They’re also there to help provide guidance, tips, and tricks to help you help your child prevent oral health issues. 

Mewing might seem beneficial or harmless at first glance, but like any practice involving health, it should be approached with caution. As a parent, staying informed and consulting with a pediatric dentist can help maintain your child’s healthy smile. Remember, while trends come and go, the importance of professional medical advice remains constant.