Cleft Palate

By Annika Tuuling

Signs and Symptoms

Description- Opening in the roof of the mouth and/or lip.
Speech disorder, stuttering, impaired voice, physical deformity, difficulties eating, hearing loss, mouth breathing, nasal congestion, snoring


Diagnosis- You can tell if your baby has a cleft palate if there is an opening on the roof of their mouth and/or lip.
There is no single known cause, rather there are multiple possible contributing factors. About %15 of cases are likely a side effect of some other birth defect, other cases are likely mutations. It's not known for sure if it can be inherited. It's possible that certain medications and/or harmful substances can contribute to this defect.


Surgery will take care of it with minimal scarring if needed. Speech therapy will help with any speaking disorders.


Cleft palates & lips (together) occur twice as often in boys than in girls, while cleft palates (with no cleft lips) occur slightly more often in girls.

1 in 600 US babies are born with some sort of cleft.