CLEFT UP & PALATE

Cleft Lip & Cleft Palate-:

Cleft lip and cleft palate, also known as orofacial cleft, is a group of conditions that includes cleft lip (CL), cleft palate (CP), and both together (CLP). A cleft lip contains an opening in the upper lip that may extend into the nose. The opening may be on one side, both sides, or in the middle. A cleft palate is when the roof of the mouth contains an opening into the nose.These disorders can result in feeding problems, speech problems, hearing problems, and frequent ear infections. Less than half the time the condition is associated with other disorders.Cleft lip and palate are the result of tissues of the face not joining properly during development.

As such, they are a type of birth defect. The cause is unknown in most casesRisk factors include smoking during pregnancy, diabetes, obesity, an older mother, and certain medications (such as some used to treat seizures). Cleft lip and cleft palate can often be diagnosed during pregnancy with an ultrasound exam.A cleft lip or palate can be successfully treated with surgery.This is often done in the first few months of life for cleft lip and before eighteen months for cleft palate.Speech therapy and dental care may also be needed.With appropriate treatment, outcomes are good.Cleft lip and palate occurs in about 1 to 2 per 1000 births in the developed world.CL is about twice as common in males as females, while CP without CL is more common in females.

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Common Psychosocial Issues-:

Various physiological and sociocultural factors contribute in the development of psychosocial issues among individuals with any form of facial anomaly in general. Research has shown that attractive children are seen by others as brighter, having more positive social behavior and receive more positive treatment than their less attractive counterparts.Self perception plays a pivotal role in influencing an individual's self esteem and psychological adjustment affected by cleft lip and palate anomaly. Additionally, parental influence also shapes ones psychosocial perception. The attitudes, expectations and degree of support shown by parents can influence a child's perception of their cleft impairment. Parents of children with clefts may be more tolerant of misbehavior in their child and are more likely to spoil their child by being overprotective. Additionally, peer interaction also plays an important role in maintaining psychosocial limitations. Many children with cleft lip and palate may have a less attractive facial appearance or speech than their peers. A high incidence of teasing over facial appearance is reported among those with cleft lip and palate. A self report research study on determining the psychosocial functioning related to cleft lip and palate, showed participants with cleft lip and palate reported greater behavioral problems; were teased often and less happy with their facial appearances.

The study concludes that having been teased was a significant predictor of poor psychological functioning amongst individuals with cleft lip and palate. However, it found limited evidence to suggest that individuals may encounter psychosocial problems as a result of having a cleft lip and palate, with overall adjustment and functioning appearing to be reasonably good.

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