How To Halt Thumb Sucking In Your Child

When it comes to children, it is not unusual to see them sucking their thumbs for comfort. Over time, however, it can cause some problems for the teeth that will require some dental treatment. If you can get your child to stop the thumb sucking early on, he or she may not need as much treatment for teeth alignment. The following ways can help you help your child give up the thumb once and for all:

Provide a Distraction

Children often respond very well to redirection. This is easily achieved by providing a distraction from whatever activity they are doing. When you see your child with their thumb in their mouth, come up with a way to distract them so that they will stop. Hand over a toy, provide a healthy snack, or get them involved in an activity. You may want to keep a mental list of different distractions so that you can come up with something quickly as soon as you see your child sucking his or her thumb.

Use Physical Cues

For kids who are having a hard time giving up the thumb, you may want to use some physical cues as a reminder. You can do this by placing something on the hands or thumb as a physical reminder to keep the thumb out of his or her mouth. You can place gloves on the hands, put a plastic bandage on the thumb, or place stickers on the thumb as a way to remind the child not to suck on it.

Give A Lot of Praise

Instead of getting angry with the child when you see him or her with a thumb in the mouth, take the time to notice when he or she is not doing it, especially at a peak time where they would normally suck their thumb. For instance, if your child sucks their thumb while riding in the car and you catch them without it, be sure to acknowledge it. Giving positive reinforcement is a great way to motivate your child to do the things you need them to do.

Thumb sucking is a very normal part of childhood, but it can have a major impact on their teeth alignment and their jaw formation. If you continue to have problems with your child kicking the thumb sucking habit, be sure to speak to your child's dentist for some additional tips or options they may have available.

About Me

Helping You Understand Your Mouth

As a young child, I was petrified of the dentist. Dental fears are common, and I found that the more I learned about the teeth and gums, the less afraid I felt making my dental appointments. The teeth and gums are simply a part of your body that need extra special care, and I want you to know there is nothing to be afraid of. I started this blog to inform others about the basic facts about the teeth, so your dentist can be seen as a helpful professional who wants to encourage oral health. After all, we only have one set of adult teeth for our entire lives. Knowledge is power, so read through some of the information so you can make it through your dental appointments as a calm and informed patient.

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