I got your name from a web search on “tongue thrusting” I am a nurse practitioner in a small rural community in Illinois. Today I saw a Mexican American baby 2 1/2 months old that frequently but not always has her tongue sticking out of her mouth. It reminds me of a Down’s baby, but she has no other Down Syndrone characteristics.
Should I be concerned? (The Mom is concerned).
She is healthy, and friendly.
L. APN, CPNP
There can be many possible causes of why a baby that young carries her tongue outside her mouth. Some possibilities might include any of the following:
- Tongue tie/ankyloglossia (if you see an actual “tip” then it would not be this)
- Respiratory reasons: allergies, congestion, infection/sinusitis, nasal blockage
- Large nipple on bottle which displaces tongue downward and forward away from the natural location on ridge behind upper front teeth
- Some type of syndrome (that might cause enlarged tongue or small oral cavity, etc.)
- Engorged breast, if nursing
- Certainly any sucking habits such as thumb, fingers, pacifier…these all displace tongue to an abnormal position when tongue is at rest
Offhand, these came to mind. If a child is still showing a “thrusting” pattern at around three years of age, it is probably not going to go away without intervention. Sometimes it results in a lisp or other type of imprecise articulation and sometimes it might cause an open bite, etc.
Hope this is helpful, even if it helps you rule out things.