Thumb Sucking, What Do I Do?

July 27th, 2012

My oldest boy never took a pacifier and never sucked his thumb I was totally good with that since he was a good sleeper and always put himself to sleep.

Remember – These are my opinions and I know everyone has their own opinions on things so if you disagree please don’t bash me on what I have to say! Just sharing my thoughts and concerns in hopes of helping others 🙂

Baby #2 came along and he sometimes took a pacifier but most of the time he just liked his thumb.  Not thinking about how I was going to take it away later I let him have it.  I loved the fact that I didn’t have to worry about a pacifier falling out and him crying.  He could sooth himself and we were good!

Fast forward to 2 years old.  We are now at the point where it isn’t totally necessary for him to suck the thumb.  We have a dentist appointment and the doctor says it is hurting his teeth.  I knew he was going to say something because you can look at his teeth and tell that the thumb is pushing them out.

We tried an extreme measure and it didn’t work so we stopped it immediately and decided to wait it out longer and just keep reminding him to not suck his thumb.  Hard to do for a kid who loves the thumb and also likes it at night.  I refuse to stand over him at night and take it out.

We are going to be turning three in November 2012 and we are trying again to stop the thumb.  He goes through stages where he hardly uses it and then the last few days every time I would look at him he would have it in his mouth, ugh!

SO we tried telling him to take it out.  He would look at us and smile and put it right back in.  It was a game to him.  I tried putting a little mitten on his hand and that worked for a little bit and he didn’t take it off (I didn’t tape it on).  He then cried for it to be taken off and we just pulled it right off.  The thumb sucking started right back again.  I used the nasty bitter stuff on his thumb and a few minutes later he came to me and wanted his teeth brushed.  I told him that he needed to keep his thumb out of his mouth or it would taste bad.

Last night at bedtime he forgot and put it back in his mouth again.  After doing this twice HE asked for a bandaid on it.  I thought to myself this kids is SO much smarter than his mommie.  I put the bandaid on his thumb and he went right to sleep.

I am keeping the bandaid on today and we will see what happens.  I think right now the bandaid is working great and he is not trying to put it in his mouth.  The thumb becomes such a strong habit with kids it becomes a hard thing to take away.  AND as I am typing this he comes up to me with the band aid and says “I don’t need it” so we will see what happens.  Will update you on our progress soon!

Did you have a thumb sucker? What method worked for you in getting them to stop?

Update: 7/30/12 Well we have made it three days and no thumb sucking.  I have seen him put his finger up to his mouth a few times and then he stops and doesn’t do it.  I think we have had a major break through this time around and he understands that it will taste bad if he puts it in his mouth.  I am thankful that it is working (so far) so his teeth will not get any worse.  Hopefully since these are baby teeth we will be alright when the big ones come in later.

He has also been going to sleep really good too and no fussing without the thumb.  I had already noticed that he wasn’t using it all the time to sooth and go to sleep.  Also when I would check on him later in the night he didn’t have it in a lot either.

Thankful for (so far) a smooth transition!

UPDATE 8/5/12 We have made it over a week and NO thumb at all.  I am so proud of how well he has done this last week.  He has had a few times of extra crying because he didn’t use his thumb to sooth himself but he comes to me and finds a blanket.  He is good about not using his blankets unless upset or in bed.  So other than a little more fussy at times or I guess you could say more emotional he has done totally awesome!  How is your little one doing? Or what did you do to get your s to quit?

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