Thumb Sucking

Sucking is a natural reflex that relaxes and comforts babies and toddlers. Children usually cease thumb sucking when the permanent front teeth are ready to erupt. Typically, children stop between the ages of 2 and 4 years. Thumb sucking that persists beyond the eruption of primary teeth can cause improper growth of the mouth and misalignment of the teeth. If you notice prolonged and/or vigorous thumb sucking behavior in your child, talk to your dentist.

Here are some ways to help your child outgrow thumb sucking:

 

  • Don’t scold a child when they exhibit thumb sucking behavior; instead, praise them when they don’t thumb suck.

  • Focus on eliminating the cause of anxiety—thumb sucking is a comfort device that helps children cope with stress or discomfort.

  • Praise them when they refrain from the habit during difficult periods.

  • Place a bandage on the thumb or a sock on their hand at night.

     

Dr. Cole Waggener

Dr. Rick Waggener
115 Parnell St.
Merritt Island, FL 32953

 

Monday – Thursday: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
1-2 pm closed for lunch

Phone: (321) 452-8190

Fax: (321) 454-4822

© 2016 Frederick H. Waggener, PA