Trying to stop thumbsucking

(10 Posts)
lisarath Thu 24-Jan-13 09:09:03

Hello! My daughter is just a little over 3 years old and we are trying now to get her to stop sucking her thumb. We have tried telling her she doesn't need to because she is a big girl but most of the time her response is that she wants to do it like her little brother. Any suggestions on methods that might help us? Do rewards help? What kind of rewards to give? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. :-)

Maeinha Thu 24-Jan-13 09:58:28

DS2 still sucks his thumb when in bed, he's 9. He doesn't do it anywhere else now, though he used to when little, but stopped as soon as he went to school. I haven't tiried to make him stop: he's been a challenging child and this has been one battle I've just not wanted to initiate. I know he'll grow out of it in due course. Is there any particular reason why you want her to stop?

lyndie Thu 24-Jan-13 10:06:37

I've tried everything, eldest 2 thumbsuck and DD has a squint baby tooth, DS has an open bite so they have to stop! Plasters over thumbs are ok, the nail biting paint is horrible. Current strategy is a chart. But your wee one is 3, maybe she still needs it? But the dentist has told us now they have to stop though if it wasn't affecting their teeth I probably wouldn't be bothered.

hillbilly Fri 25-Jan-13 14:13:54

Stop & Grow nailbiting nail varnish worked for us within a week on DD (7). Prob a bit of her own willpower too though as she really wanted to stop.

Mamaski Fri 25-Jan-13 17:27:59

Check out Thumbuddy To Love...it comes with a book, thumb puppet and success chart endorsed by dentists and it can help her break the thumb sucking. it is all about growing up and she will get it. Google Thumbuddy To Love.

Slallen Fri 25-Jan-13 22:49:18

Picking your battles is a real dilemma with this one! DD 4 still sucking hers but have to much other stuff at the moment! It's not necessarily true they'll grow out of it, sister inlaws sister still sucks hers at 27 and her thumb is deformed from it.

lisarath Mon 28-Jan-13 12:54:51

Thanks everyone

Pandsbear Thu 31-Jan-13 16:30:31

Hmm well at 3 I don't think you need to worry too much. My DD has just managed to stop sucking her thumb at 7.5 (started sucking her thumb at 6 weeks old!) and I am very impressed with her. I think that this is a reallly really hard habit to break and that children have to want to do it rather than us trying to nag them.

We tried the reward charts when she was about 4, nagging/reminding, plaster round thumb etc but all unsuccessful as she didn't want to stop - it was a huge comfort thing. Finally changed her mind after Christmas as her two top front teeth came out and we had always said she would HAVE to stop sucking her thumb then so the big teeth would grow straight. She just did it, I think she finally understood. It was hard but she didn't get cross if we caught the thumb sneaking back in etc and now she says she forgets about her thumb completely apart from sometimes at night. With my DD it was her age and understanding the reasons to stop - think she may always have a slightly thinner 'sucky thumb' though, as she has squeezed it for 7 years...

joannita Thu 31-Jan-13 16:33:52

Catch her when she's not sucking it and praise her. Do this many times a day. Apparently it works!

popsnsqeeze Thu 31-Jan-13 16:36:25

Maeinha - my 24 year old sister and my 22 year old brother still suck their thumbs... I don't think everyone grows out of it! They do it in private, but it's a bit ridiculous.

I personally used the stop and grow nail polish when I was 12 or 13, I wanted to break my habit. And did so successfully. I'm now pushing 30 and haven't had the urge since!

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