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A new study published in the journal Pediatrics suggests that babies who exclusively breast-fed may have a decreased risk of dental misalignment than those who only partially breast-fed. Moreover, the use of pacifiers may negate some of that potential benefit, even if the children are breast-feeding. The study evaluated 1,300 children over a five year period.

Children should stop using pacifiers by age 2. Up until the age of 2, any alignment problem with the teeth or the developing bone is usually corrected within a 6-month period after pacifier use is stopped. Prolonged pacifier use and thumb sucking can cause problems with the proper growth of the mouth, alignment of the teeth and changes in the shape of the roof of the mouth.