How to Stop Thumbsucking

Discussion in 'Countryside Families' started by fitwind, Dec 19, 2006.

  1. fitwind

    fitwind Well-Known Member

    Aug 26, 2005
    SW Missouri
    My daughter is 9 yrs. old and she still sucks her thumb. I have tried evrythig that I can think of to get her to stop. I have tried tobasco sauce,pepper,
    gloves, and lots of others. I don't know what to do anymore I had given up then I thought of asking on here. She is ruining her teeth they are all coming in crooked and will need major orthodontic work now. Any ideas on how I can help her stop? :help:
  2. largentdepoche

    largentdepoche Well-Known Member

    Dec 8, 2005
    There is this sort of nail polish that tastes OH so gross, it is meant to stop nailbiting. My mom used it on me and it worked like a champ.

    If you coated your daughter's thumb in it, maybe that would work?

    You can find it at any stores, Mom found it at the grocery store.


  3. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2003
    i had two thumbsuckers. the doctor told me to let them do it and they would quit by themselves. :flame: they were still doing it (in secret, in bed) when they were 18. nothing worked. my son LIKED the hot sauce.

    you probably don't want to hear this, but my son finally quit when he pierced his tongue. :help: daughter finally quit by will power. :hobbyhors
  4. caroline00

    caroline00 Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    They dont make that polish anymore. Our orthodontist has an appliance she can make and put in our sons mouth...but we already have 2 in full braces right now that we are still paying on and I dont want to spend the $500 for a 3rd child. Our son is 10 1/2 now...still sucking his fingers...
  5. mary,tx

    mary,tx Well-Known Member Supporter

    Dec 4, 2002
    Have you tried THUM? You buy it at the pharmacy, and paint it on like nailpolish. And, of course, sit down and talk with her about why it is important to stop. Get her on your team so she understands you are helping her when you remind her.
  6. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jun 6, 2004
    Michigan's thumb
    Is she into girlie stuff? A nice manicure may make her more interested in quitting, especially if she has decals. Also, give her something else to put in her mouth. I don't know what, a thumb is so, well, handy. Maybe a penny whistle, or bubble gum.
  7. fitwind

    fitwind Well-Known Member

    Aug 26, 2005
    SW Missouri
    Yeah she does but she still does it.Gum is just a temperary fix I wish it worked all the time.
  8. fitwind

    fitwind Well-Known Member

    Aug 26, 2005
    SW Missouri
    I have tried painting stuff on her nails now she just washes her hands real good until it is all gone.
  9. Elffriend

    Elffriend Well-Known Member

    Mar 2, 2003
    The Grey Havens
    As with most additive behaviors, the person has to want to stop. My parents tried everything to get me to stop sucking my thumb. I finally stopped on my own when I decided to stop. I was 14.
  10. holleegee

    holleegee Well-Known Member

    Mar 3, 2005
  11. Cheryl in SD

    Cheryl in SD Living in the Hills Supporter

    Apr 22, 2005
    South Dakota
    I had three that sucked their thumbs. I gave them a date to quit. (7th birthday) Then we told them that they could not suck their thumbs anywhere but on their beds. We had to remind them a few times but we stuck to the rule and they were able to quit.
  12. hunter gatherer

    hunter gatherer Well-Known Member

    Dec 6, 2002
    I would recommend going ahead and getting her in to an orthodonist right away. If you think she is ruining her teeth what is the point in waitng until the situation worsens?

    Many orthodontists now days will start treatment when a child is 9-11 years old. The idea is to spread the palate to make room for the teeth that will be coming in and/or fix jaw alignment problems BEFORE straightening the teeth with braces. I imagine an orthodontist would have alot of insight ( and probably solutions) concerning your daughter's thumb sucking problem.

    Both of my daughters are in "pre-braces" appliances right now ( I'm really against pulling teeth and these appliances will assure that they will keep all of their molars and end up with wide beautiful smiles). If they had been thumb suckers, their appliances would have taken care of that habit in short order. There would be no way that one could suck a thumb with these things in. It did, in fact, take care of my older daughter's nail biting problem.

    BTW- most orthodontists will give a free intial consult. We saw 4 different orthodontists before deciding on a treatment plan.
  13. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

    Mar 12, 2004
    Along the Stillaquamish, Washington
    Thumbsucking can contribute but don't cause tooth problems. Sounds like she'll need orthodontia no matter what. As for the thumbsucking, leave her alone, she'll outgrow eventually. The more stress she is under to quit to more she "needs" it, its no-win for everyone concerned. Besides, there are worse things....................
  14. ThreeJane

    ThreeJane Me Love Your Face

    Nov 5, 2004
    North Idaho
    My son got in the habit of sucking on his thumbs and fingers.

    I remembered how bad nail polish remover with me...I wet a cotton ball with it, rubbed it over his fingers, waited until it dried, and reminded him not to put his fingers in his mouth. I watched, a dreamy finger would come up, the face would be made, and the finger removed immediately.

    Very hard to wash off too and tastes BITTER NASTY. Downside is I don't know what would happen if a dedicated thumbsucker continued to suck on their thumb, if it would make them sick. My son's sucking was more of an absentminded thing and he didn't have a problem with me "making" him quit.

    Actually, it kind of embarrassed him. Much harder to get him to stop chewing on the sleeves and neck of his shirt!

    The "washing very well until it comes off" thing sounds more like her thumbsucking is a defiance issue as well as a habit?
  15. MWG

    MWG Well-Known Member

    Aug 14, 2006
    Lincolnton NC
    Out of the box thinking idea, but could you make her stick her thumb in cow dung every morning? Make sure it gets under her fingernails... Maybe heat the dung in the microwave for 10 minutes to kill all the nasties...

    That would make me quit!
  16. Jillis

    Jillis Well-Known Member

    Sep 11, 2005
    Northeast Kingdom of Vermont
    ThreeJane---the phrase "dedicated thumbsucker" made me spit my tea!

    My 4th son chewed all the necks of his shirts. The necks would get stretched and because they were damp with saliva the dirt would stick really good. My kids ALWAYS looked like orphans. One week after getting new clothes, they were in stained tatters. I have four boys and every one of them plays hard.

    Folks from church were always giving me bags of clothes. Because they always looked so tatty.

    I was a thumbsucker who quit late. In my case, I had a very traumatic childhood and it was self comfort. I think I quit at age 9 or 10.

    My oldest son used to play with my hair when he nursed, when he transitioned to his thumb, he played with his own hair. He always had a tudt that was up in the air from being tugged and twirled. To this day, and he is 24 yo, he will grab a piece of his hair (no matter how short his cut!) and twirl it nervously when he is stressed. I think he quit the thumb though...

    Find out why your dd needs the comfort so much and adress THAT issue...maybe that is what you need to focus on. If you make the thumbsucking too much of an issue itself, it becomes a control issue. Then, even if she wants to quit, she might not because then she would be "giving in", KWIM?
  17. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    May 10, 2002
    My DD bites her nails, on again off again. She bites them when she is tense, grows them out again when things are calmer.

    Like thumbsucking, this is a NERVOUS habit, for a TENSE child.

    Yes, I DID remind her not to bite her nails, but what REALLY helped was talking about what was bugging her and breathing (relaxation) exercizes.
  18. FolioMark

    FolioMark In Remembrance

    May 10, 2002
    illinois but i have a homestead building in missou
    Heaven sakes. All you Southerners on here and you dont know the solution to thumbsucking. Even a Yankee like me knows the answer to this one.

    From Gone With The Wind:

    Rhett Butler(with Bonnie) on Horseback encounters Mrs Dolly Merriwether on the streets of Atlanta

    RB: I have always valued your advice Mrs. Merriwether. My Bonnie just wont stop sucking her thumb. I dont know how to stop her.

    DM: You must stop her Captain Butler. It will spoil the shape of her mouth.


    As always GWTW has an answer to everything. :rolleyes: :p
  19. Pony

    Pony STILL not Alice Supporter

    Jan 6, 2003
    A poem from the late Shel Silverstein:

    “Oh, the thumbsucker's thumb
    may look wrinkled and wet
    and withered and white as the snow.
    But the taste of a thumb
    is the sweetest taste yet,
    as only we thumbsuckers know.”

    And a song:
    Shel Silverstein
    Yeah yeah now this song is a warning yes folks a warnin' against the danger
    A very very economy a social fibre mortal turpitude haha national security
    And friends the danger is not it is not the long hairs
    And it is not the warmongers all the squares all the truckusers all the fuss
    Friends the danger the real danger is thumbsuckers
    Yes you heard me my friends I think thumbsucker
    And every time every time you make a peace sign with your fingers
    And every time you push a door bell
    And every time you're on highway stick your thumb
    There's always there in the shadows some dirty sneaky thumbsucker
    Who will leap out upon you grab your wrist
    And start to suck your thumb drainin' all your natural thumbjuices
    And leavin' you hopeless heartless a shakin' quiverin' crawlin' slaverin'
    Thumbsuckin' addict for the rest of your unusual life

    That's why I ain't gonna let no thumbsucker suck my thumb
    It'll drive you crazy and leave you deaf and dumb
    It'll make you crawl and climb the wall and leave you without no thumb at all
    I ain't gonna let no thumbsucker suck my thumb

    Met her on a corner in Deluth and that's truth
    She was tryin' to fix her shoe in a telephone booth her name was Ruth
    She said she was just waiting for a bus
    But I hid my thumb cause I knew just what she was
    Uhh I ain't gonna let no...
    [ piano - guitar ]
    I'll tell you what them thumbsuckers like to do
    They suck your thumb till it's wrinkled like a prune
    They'll say you've got the sweetest thumb of all they say
    But then they suck the thumb of the guy livin' down the hall
    That's why I ain't gonna let no...
    Suck my thumb suck my thumb suck my thumb suck my thumb

    My DD sucked her thumb til she was three, stopped, and started again when her dad died. She finally quit when the braces went on at 10. (But I think she still sucks her thumb at night when no one is looking, so she puts her retainer in to keep her honest.)

  20. Tiffin

    Tiffin Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2006
    Central New York
    Our DS stopped when his Dad told him that kids in school would make fun of him if he sucked his thumb in kindergarten. For some reason, this worked. He might have sucked his thumb at night but I think he just quit. Other than this I would leave the kid alone. I think trying ways to make them quit would just make them want to do it more. Fortunately, we had a good dentist who recognized that he had too many teeth coming in for his mouth and had 4 adult teeth pulled before all the teeth came in. He has beautiful teeth today at 32 years old. I wonder how they would have been if he had continued to suck his thumb and we didn't have a good dentist.