2 1/2 year old still sucks his fingers

Jessica - posted on 11/05/2010 ( 2 moms have responded )

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My 2 1/2 year old has been sucking his 2 middle fingers everyday since he was about 3 months old. It has affected his 4 front teeth by moving them to adapt to his fingers being in his mouth. I'm worried that his permanent teeth will be affected by this. I'm not too worried about him sucking his fingers in and of itself, I'm pretty sure he'll give it up by the time he's in kindergarten, if not, I'll deal with it then. Has anyone had a similar problem? Were your child's permanent teeth ok? Should I get him to stop doing it now? I'm not sure he would understand why.

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Nikkole - posted on 11/05/2010

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lol i feel your pain mine almost the and is still on a passifier we ALMOST had him off until my daughter was born then he saw hers and HAD to have his but hes gonna get it taken away very soon! Good luck!

Heather - posted on 11/05/2010

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I think little ones sucking fingers or thumb is just too stinking cute so it is a hard one to try to encourage them to give up. However i was a thumb sucker and my teeth were def worse off for it. Every kid is differnt adn different things work for diff kids but some ideas to try may be "hey big guy, you don't need those fingers in your mouth...you need them out so you can use them to play." Or "hey buddy, your sucking your fingers, are you thirsty, want a cup of water" so that you are gentley starting to bring it to his attention so that he is aware and starts to reduce it since you are gentlley telling him that he does not need his fingers in his mouth. Then from there i know a few moms who would change over to making a popping sound to remind their kid to remove thumb or fingers from mouth (they would use their finger or lips to pop, or snack fingers, just a little sound to get their attention). I think it is also ok to say something "your teeth are so beautiful i like to see them when you talk adn smile so can you please take your fingers our so i can see your pretty face?" Or "when you suck your fingers it makes your fingers get all dry and a bump on them and i don;t want that to start hurting you or get itchy so how about if we dry off your fingers" Or "hey buddy, your teeth are gonna start to grow differently and may make it harder to eat if your fingers are in your mouth all the time, how about we try to keep them out of your mouth?" or "honey your seem to be sucking on your fingers alot today does that mean you are feeling sleepy or need a cuddle? " Just gentlly remind him and encourage him to give up the fingers? I would be careful to not bribe him or make him feel bad and just be kind an loving about it.

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