How to Prevent Thumb Sucking

Almost 90% of children have the habit of sucking their thumb. There can be a wide range on reasons for your child’s thumb sucking. It can provide a soothing comfort and relax your child. This is a natural reflex reaction, which helps a child in getting good sleep when he is tired a lot. Here are some methods that will help you know how to prevent thumb sucking.

Thumb sucking can lead into some serious problems, mainly if the child does not stop sucking his thumb even when he/she is getting permanent teeth. This can damage the structure of your child’s teeth and mouth and spoil their alignment. The severity of the effects depends upon the intensity of thumb sucking in your child.

Tips to prevent thumb sucking:

You should prefer adapting some natural methods to prevent thumb sucking in your child. Children who are intensive or vigorous thumb suckers can have some serious problems, so their parents should try some necessary precautions on time.

  • Keep your kids busy with some work so that their attention is diverted towards something else and their hands do not reach their mouth.
  • Give them toys to play, that makes them enthusiastic and keeps their hand busy.
  • You can also attach something at the elbow of your child such that his/ her hand does not bend and reach mouth.
  • You can attach an x- ray film that will prevent the child from bending his/her hand.
  • You can also place a small wooden log by attaching a soft cloth making two to three folds of it so that the baby does not get hurt. You can attach a soft material to the wooden log. This will also not allow the child to bend his hand.
  • Applying a coat of some foul-tasting substance on the child’s thumb. Prefer using some natural substances, which are safe for your child even if your child engulfs it.
  • Solution made from neem will be the best option. Grind some neem leaves in a grinder and filter it to get the juice out of it. Apply this solution on the thumb or on all the fingers. The bitter taste will repel your child’s hand. If you do not get neem leaves, you can use any other bitter tasting substances.
  • You can also tie a cloth to the hand of your child or only to the finger, which he/she generally sucks. This should not be easily removable, but make sure that it is not too tight.
  • Your child generally sucks the thumb to get a soothing and comforting feeling. If you teach your child other ways of having comfort, they will definitely get rid of sucking thumb.
  • You can bring tethers; they will also provide comfort to your child.
  • In case of severe problem, you can attach dental cribs to their teeth. These are quiet expensive, but save your child’s teeth and bone structure.

Some parents make use of gloves, which are not at all useful in this case as your child can remove them easily. So, never use gloves. The tips and suggestions given above are very helpful in preventing thumb sucking.

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