Dummies and thumb sucking

Key health professionals who can provide advice:
  • Midwives
  • Health visitors
  • Nursery nurses
Key messages: 
  • Not all babies need a dummy but if your baby does, try to limit their use to when you feel they need it most
  • Frequent use of a dummy or thumb-sucking can cause a gap in the top front teeth, where the teeth move to make space for the dummy/thumb. This is called an open bite and can be seen in the image below:

open bite.png

  • Your child's speech development can also be affected by frequent use of a dummy or thumb sucking
  • Don't dip dummies in anything sweet, such as sugar or jam
  • Never suck your baby’s dummy to ‘clean’ it as this will spread germs between you and your baby. Keep a spare instead