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Treat a Cleft Palate in Children

Are you worried about your baby’s cleft palate? Our Buffalo orthodontists can help your child treat this issue. Please keep reading to learn more, and then either fill out a contact form or give us a call right away to set up a free consultation.

Diagnosing a Cleft Palate

During pregnancy, very early on, the mouth of a baby is formed. This happens in the first trimester, around six to nine weeks pregnant. When the baby’s roof of their mouth does not join, this is called a cleft palate.

If left untreated, these babies can have difficulty eating, talking, and have recurring ear infections. Cleft palates happen in about 0.06% of pregnancies in the USA.

Our WNY orthodontists can be treated with craniofacial orthodontic treatment.

What Causes a Cleft Palate?

There is no clear reason why issues like cleft palates and cleft lips happen in pregnancies. Sometimes it can be due to the genes that the baby carries. Other times, it might be due to the environment of the pregnancy such as what the mother is eating, drinking, or taking medication for.

There are more studies being done that are going to try to determine the reasons why these clefts happen in babies. The CDC is doing research to try to understand the risk factors for birth defects better.

The reasons that the CDC has to believe that clefts in babies may happen to include the following:

  • Smoking during pregnancy is considered to be a risk factor for birth defects. In pregnancies where the mother did not smoke, there were lower risks of birth defects.
  • When pregnancy is affected by diabetes, it can increase the chance that a pregnancy will result in a cleft palate or cleft lip. This is compared to a pregnancy that is not affected by diabetes.
  • Medication taken by the mother can also affect the baby. If the mother takes medication for epilepsy in the first trimester, this can increase the chance of cleft palates. Again, this is compared to mothers who did not take these medications.

It is important to know that these are risk factors, not guarantees that your child will have a cleft lip or palate. This is something that is still being looked into. If your child has a cleft lip or palate and you did not have any of these risk factors, it is likely an unknown reason why this happened.

Treating a Cleft Palate

Depending on how old your child is, the treatment that they will be offered is going to be varied. If your child is going to get surgery to correct the issue, it will happen before they turn 18 months old.

Making sure your child receives this surgery in a timely manner will improve the way they eat and talk as they grow up. They might need more treatment in their lifetime, but the surgery is the first step in getting your child’s cleft palate treated.

Call Us Today

If you are looking for someone to take a look at your child to see if they need oral surgery, please call us today to set up a free consultation.

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Orthodontists Associates of Western New York is proud to offer craniofacial orthodontics for cleft lip and palate throughout Buffalo, LancasterOleanHamburgOrchard Park, and DunkirkEast Aurora, and Niagara Falls New York. If you have questions about cleft lip or cleft palate treatment for yourself or a loved one, please contact one of our 7 convenient orthodontic offices to arrange a free consultation.

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Our reputation as a leader in orthodontic care is based on one thing… Making a Healthy and Beautiful Smile

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