For parents, thumb sucking is a very debatable issue. No one seems to know when is the right time to stop the habit as well as why some kids suck their thumbs or how to take measures to curb the habit. Irrespective of what you do, you need to know is that thumb sucking is a natural occurrence.
There are several moms who had sonograms showing babies in wombs sucking thumbs. The reasons behind the occurrence are still not clear and even doctors don’t have any answers. Many doctors believe that it is a soothing technique that many toddlers use to calm themselves as well as reduce anxiety.
Knowing that thumb sucking is a common thing among preschoolers, still, it can’t stop you from knowing that excess thumb sucking might damage the oral health of the kid. In fact, it results in damage to the jaw line, cross bite, shifted teeth and overbites. Wondering what you can do as a mom of a kid who still can’t do away with thumb sucking? Well, the first thing is to visit a pediatrician or a pediatric dentist. Talk to them about your concern and seek advice on how you curb the habit. The pediatrician would help you access the age and development of your child provide you a guideline on what steps you need to follow to stop thumb sucking.
Most of the doctors feel that thumb sucking till 2 years is normal; however, it needs to stop when your kid exceeds two years of age. Here are some things you can do apart from going to a doctor. Preschoolers can understand acceptable and unacceptable behavior. Tell them that even though thumb sucking was fine till they were young, it is time to give up now. Point out to some of the cartoon characters and tell them they don’t suck thumb and so neither should he.
Does your child suck thumb during night or nap time or they do it all the time? Knowing when your child is prone to sucking thumb can help you deal with the issue. If your kid sucks thumb during sleeping, you can introduce an alternative. Give them a toy or a soft blanket. Let your kid know that the special item would replace the thumb sucking habit. Use some habit breaking aids such as a thumb guard.