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Pediatr Dent. 2003 Nov-Dec;25(6):587-90.

A retrospective study of the use of the Bluegrass appliance in the cessation of thumb habits.

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Division of Pediatric Dentistry, Department of Oral Health Science, College of Dentistry, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, USA.



The purpose of this study was to evaluate the use of the Bluegrass appliance in ceasing the thumb-sucking habit.


Patient records of 41 subjects, ages 4 to 20 years of age, who attended the University of Kentucky Pediatric Dental Clinic for the treatment of a thumb-sucking habit with the Bluegrass appliance, were reviewed. Of the 41 subjects, 30 were included in the study. Data collected from the records included age, sex, past dental history, past medical history, history during treatment with the Bluegrass appliance, patient and/or parental/legal guardian report of cessation of the habit, and total treatment time.


Of the 30 subjects included in the study, the results showed that in 28 (93%) of the patients, the thumb habit was ceased after insertion of and complete treatment with the Bluegrass appliance. The average reported treatment time for the cessation of the habit was 12.3 weeks+/-12.2 weeks. The mean total treatment time for the thumb habit with the Bluegrass appliance was 30.3 weeks+/-1 7.7 weeks, with 6 (20%) of the patients requiring reinsertion of the appliance during treatment.


The results of this study suggest that the Bluegrass appliance is an effective treatment option for the cessation of a thumb-sucking habit with limited treatment complications.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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