Friday, July 16, 2010

The Facts About Thumb Sucking

Thumb sucking is a very common and also very natural habit for young children. Babies have been shown to even suck their thumbs while still in the womb! It is estimated that about 80% of infants and children suck their thumbs at some point during their early lives. That number decreases to about an average of 15% when children reach the age of four. 15% is still a very large percentage and while you may be confused as to why your child insists on sucking their thumb, there are a number of reasons for the habit. Many children suck their thumb when they are scared, anxious or nervous. Tired, bored and children in need of soothing have also frequently been found to suck their thumbs.

As mentioned, thumb sucking is an incredibly common and normal thing. But you want to break your child’s habit as soon as possible. If the habit persists far into their childhood, certain consequences and side effects could arise. These may range from damage to permanent teeth which will cause dental and orthodontic problems, to self-esteem or social side effects.

The thing that is important to remember is that thumb sucking is perfectly natural and normal. Intervention for a very young child is not necessary. However, when a child still has the habit anywhere from the age to 4-6, it may be time to intervene. If positive reinforcement and encouragement do not work to break the thumb sucking habit, perhaps a physical barrier such as a stop thumb sucking Thumbusters glove is the solution.

Thumb sucking is perfectly normal and also a habit that you can help your child break. Just make sure that you don’t wait too long.


Welcome to the Thumbusters Blog! We will share information, statistics, advice and answer any questions you may have about thumb sucking on this blog. We want to do whatever we can to help you or your child learn about and stop a thumb sucking habit.

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