Thumb sucking and finger sucking are both extremely common habits that almost one-third of all children have. In the first year of life, many children look to these habits as a form of self-soothing, but it is unfortunately an unhealthy oral habit and can have different consequences in the future if not addressed quickly. Dental Arts SPB in St. Pete Beach, Florida, we not only take dental and oral problems seriously in adulthood, but are also heavily interested in preventive care for our young patients as well.
What Causes Thumb Sucking?
Many things can trigger thumb sucking such as boredom, anxiety, hunger, anger, and even sadness. As stated above, thumb sucking can be looked to for comfort during an uncomfortable emotional state or a situation that is exceedingly stressful.
Quick Tips to Defeat Thumb Sucking
If your child has not stopped sucking their thumbs buy age four, then a weaning of the habit is necessary to develop a healthy young smile. Your child’s mouth is rapidly developing past age 4 and thumb sucking can heavily interfere with the process.
Identify their Thumb Sucking Triggers
One of the best ways to tackle thumb sucking is by starting at the source. Once you figure out what triggers your child in the first place, you can help them to adapt their behavior into different forms using positive reinforcement. Preparing them for the situation ahead of time can also serve as a great way to stop your child from thumb sucking.
Cover their Thumbs
If the problem becomes more and more stressful to you and your child, you can make their thumbs less appealing by wrapping them with Band-Aids or special gauze. This simple method has proven to work well and can produce results that are long lasting.
To really teach your child the benefits of having a healthy smile, and how to achieve it, it is best to visit our office. At our office in St. Pete Beach Florida, we would be more than willing to talk to your child one on one, so in order to do so be sure to give us a call or send us an email to make the initial appointment.