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A lot of babies love to suck on their thumbs. It is something that a kid learns on his or her own and does it to make himself feel better. Sucking on the thumb works like a pacifier for little kids. While that may be all normal, too much of thumb sucking can lead to dental issues if done past the age of five years.
Parents, we know that it is not easy to stop your kids from sucking on their thumbs but here are some easy ways to break this habit!
1. Try to limit the time your child sucks his thumb. Explain it to him or her that this activity is only for nap time.
2. Do not lash out or criticize them for doing so. Instead, follow positive reaffirmations and praise them when they are not sucking their thumb.
3. Talk to your child about the problem of thumb sucking. Help the child understand that you are there for help whenever they need.
4. Do not prohibit your child from sucking the thumb because when they are sad or hurt, they need their comfort zone. By prohibiting the child at such moments, you are traumatizing him. If your kid sucks the thumb in response to stress or anger, recognize it and try to provide him comfort in other ways like by giving a hug or reassuring words.
5. Do not use bad and nasty tasting stuff on the thumb so that your kid stop sucking it. This is a cruel habit to follow.
6. Kids copy everything, especially what they like. Give your kid examples of his favorite cartoon characters and tell them how they do not suck their thumb.
7. Using a glove or a mitten will only cause more anxiety in your kid. Do not do it.
8. Please remember that a child eventually grows out of the need for thumb sucking when he is ready. While most of you won’t believe, it’s better left alone as kids eventually give up the habit.