PATIENT INFORMATION > About Cleft > Causes of cleft 

About Cleft

Causes of cleft

Even though cleft lips and palates are the most common congenital facial deformations it is still not fully clear what actually causes them. There is no single reason for cleft. Rather, there are genetic and environmental factors that influence the likelihood that a child is born with a cleft condition:



  • Parents or other family members have cleft (and other genetic reasons),
  • Consanguineous marriages (children born from a couple who are close relatives),
  • Vitamin deficiency during pregnancy,
  • Poor quality of air or water in the living environment,
  • Living in high altitudes (thin air).


Many people still believe that cleft is given by god or that it is related to lunar or solar eclipses. This is not true. No person can be made responsible for the deformity.