A cleft lip or palate is one of the most common birth defects, affecting nearly 1 of every 1,000 births. During the sixth to tenth weeks of pregnancy, the roof of a child’s mouth and their upper lip come together by the upper jaw, with the nose and mouth bones fusing together. If they do not completely fuse, a cleft occurs.
There are a number of reasons this cleft would occur, ranging from genetics to medications taken during pregnancy. Smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol and using drugs all substantially increase the risk of this birth defect.
A cleft lip or palate can lead to many health problems. Children born with this abnormality have a hard time eating and an increase in fluid build-up in their middle ear. Children can also develop dental and speech problems.
Call Topeka ENT at 785-233-0500 for more information or to schedule an appointment.