Children and thumb sucking

Placing the finger or thumb on the roof of the mouth behind the teeth and sucking with lips and teeth closed.Thumb sucking is common and is a behavior,not a disorder.
Children of both sexes up to age 12,but most common in young children.

Sign & Symptoms

Sucking of the thumb(most likely to occur before going to sleep)watching TV,or when hungry,ill or tired.)

Causes

Thumb sucking is one of the first coordinated acts that an infant can do that brings comfort,pleasure and satiesfies a need  for extra sucking.Thumb sucking that persists beyond infancy(particularly into preschool years)might suggest a situational disorder.
Risk increase with:
Addition of a new baby brother or sister in the family.
Infant senses a withdrawal of parents intrest or attention.

How to prevent

Thumb sucking is normal and does not cause serious damage until the permanent teeth beging cuttingt hrough
gums at age 6 or 7.Most children have outgrown the habit by this age.if not,parents should work with the child to change the habit for the sake of appearance and dental health.
Provide other comfort mechanisms early in infancy,such as pacifiers if you desire.
General Measures
No treatment or action is usually necessary,Method such as punishment,shaming and reminders ae usually of no avail,other methods also are not particularly successful (mittens,bad -tasting substances on the thumb,elbow splints.etc.)and may cause additinal trauma.
For a child over 6 or 7 who sucks the fingers or thumb;
Give the child extra attension.Observe if conflicts or anxiety producing situation provoke sucking.Help the child explore other solutions to stress.

In the child decides to try to stop sucking ,help the child set goals.Give rewards for any progress toward the goals,reward is not a bribe,but something earned through effort.

Leave a Comment

Subscribe to My Newsletter


About Me

Dr. Muhammad Iqbal is a board certified Homeopathic Skin and Beauty Specialist

Working Hours

Morning: 9.00 am - 2.00 pmEvening: 6.00 pm - 10.00 pm
Subscribe to My Newsletter


About Me

Dr. Muhammad Iqbal is a board certified Homeopathic Skin and Beauty Specialist

Working Hours

Morning: 9.00 am - 2.00 pmEvening: 6.00 pm - 10.00 pm