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Thumb Sucking A Problem?

Many children give up the habit before they start preschool, but for persistent thumb suckers, intervention might be necessary.

Thumb sucking is a natural reflex that calms, soothes, and lulls a baby or child to sleep. Even in the womb, fetuses suck their thumbs to prepare themselves to breastfeed. Most children drop the habit on their own as they get a little older and are more capable of processing their emotions. But for some children, the need to soothe isn’t satisfied, and they continue to suck their thumb or pacifier.

Most pediatricians and dentists recommend that your child stop sucking their thumb or using a pacifier by the time they are between two and four years old. In most cases, thumb sucking is not usually a concern, but if the habit persists or becomes a constant or vigorous habit, professional intervention may be recommended.

Whichever treatment method you choose, remember to use positive reinforcement to encourage your child. Criticism, nagging, or scolding your child for sucking their thumb might make the problem worse and cause more anxiety for your child. Provide a loving and nurturing atmosphere and reassure your child that they are safe and loved.

Visit Smile Squad at 11740 TX-249A Houston, TX 77086 or call us (281) 713-5780.