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Cathyincayman  (Level: 50.2 - Posts: 33)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 11:15 AM


I know you guys are always full of GREAT advice, so I'm pleading to the natives: My 8yr old daughter has sucked her thumb since she was 2 days old and now her teeth are pushing out, I've tried bribery, guilt, duct tape, threats (she just laughs at those 'cause I never follow through).I can't afford the dental thing you put behind their teeth and forget braces, NOTHING WORKS!!!! Help,she's a smart kid, what do I try next???

Larefamiliaris  (Level: 135.2 - Posts: 877)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 11:24 AM

You could tell her that unless she stops now, the Scissor Man will come and cut them off...
But that might lead to a lot of expensive therapy.

I seem to remember that you could buy some kind of foul-tasting liquid that parents could 'paint' on to kids thumbs, (but wasn't harmful obviously!), to try and stop it. Don't know what it was called though.

Smaug  (Level: 145.4 - Posts: 2763)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 11:32 AM

Try cayenne pepper.

Salzypat  (Level: 162.6 - Posts: 5425)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 11:40 AM

I'll be watching this thread for ALL ideas because my grandson, 8, also is a thumb sucker and his dad is taking him to the orthodontist to prevent further misalignment of the teeth. Probably when she gets to the point she's doing sleep-overs with friends she'll get tired of the teasing and quit then. Boys don't do sleep-overs as much I guess.

Cathyincayman  (Level: 50.2 - Posts: 33)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 11:51 AM

She doesn't do sleepovers yet and her best friend is a thumb sucker too, so no embarrassment there, tried all the paint on stuff, pepper etc, she washes it off, she's VERY sneaky so I have to go in stealth mode!!!! HELP!!!

1mks  (Level: 221.1 - Posts: 5930)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 1:54 PM

Have you tried bribes? Honestly, that sometimes works. Come up with something that they want really badly and put a time limit in place and then get the "wanted" item for her as a reward. There is a "new" fad going on the area with children about her age. There are some new stuffed animals out there much like beanie babies but these are called "webkinz" and are difficult to find so that makes the kids want them even more. What is so unique about these is that they have an access code and you connect to the internet to adopt them, name them, play games, etc. The children here have gone nuts for them. My grandson wants one very much....he will be 8 in a couple of weeks. His mother has been trying to find one for him for 3 months! Mimi scored and got him one so he will be getting it for his birthday. They retail for around $13 and that is the only cost to play on the computer. Just a thought. Might work. Marsha

Cathyincayman  (Level: 50.2 - Posts: 33)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 1:58 PM

I tried offering her $50 to spend on vacation, did that work NOOO, there's nothing she wants really badly and she's already earned some vacation money for doing chores and I can't take that away. Also we don't have a computer at home, thanks anyway. Cathy

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3640)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 2:07 PM

Find some pictures on the internet of some really nasty teeth and tell her that's what she's going to look like in a few years if she doesn't stop disfiguring herself.

Felix  (Level: 109.3 - Posts: 2498)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 2:10 PM

If it's only a problem at night try an Ace Bandage on each elbow. The childs arms (when bent) will 'fall asleep' and drop to their side. It's working fairly well on me. If I could just quit it at work.

Geophile  (Level: 168.3 - Posts: 1553)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 2:18 PM

I babysat a little girl who was a habitual thumbsucker. She is in her 40s today and her husband, no less, says that occasionally, in her sleep, she sucks her thumb! I think that this is an extreme case. Maybe Simon (Sblv) our resident genius orthodontist would venture an opinion, even though he comes to the site to "relax." We won't let him.

Our 2 older kids never bothered with it but the youngest sucked her first two fingers and twirled her hair with the other hand. Her hair was a rat's nest until I cut it. Then, she just gave it up. All of them needed orthodontia, even though the 2 didn't suck their thumbs. As old as they are now, whenever we have family get togethers, the kids will say...."keep you mouths has the look of teeth!" Of course I like to look at their teeth - single most costly investment we made outside of college! I can tell who is wearing their retainer and who is slipping.

Remember, if all else fails, there IS orthodontia! So you scrub floors for a few years...!

Sherilynn1962  (Level: 116.6 - Posts: 372)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 4:41 PM

I still sucked my thumb at 8, but stopped at about 9, I think. I remember I tried to stop but couldn't, because it was a habit (much like cigarettes). My parents had a friend who would come to my house and pull out his pocket knife and threaten to cut off my thumb if he saw me sucking it - all that did was make me hide in my closet any time he came over - please don't try threats! I was terrified of him for years.

Don't know what finally made me stop, but I do remember that the callus on my thumb took about 10 years to go away, and my thumb nail is permanently damaged - there are rough lines in it always.

I don't have any good advice to offer (other than don't threaten) - I figure I knew when it was time to stop and I just stopped.

Sheri Ras.

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3640)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 6:27 PM

I did read that rather than punish and discourage for thumb sucking, ignore it and instead reward and make a big deal out of the times she DOESN'T suck her thumb.

Smaug  (Level: 145.4 - Posts: 2763)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 7:31 PM

I think the more common problem we had was "binkies" or pacifiers. all three of my kids hung on to them.

With my son, we just had to tell him "big boys don't do that". Once it set in he stopped it immediately. He was....oh....probably 15.

My twin girls were a different case. We stopped them cold turkey and oh-my-god it was like an air raid siren for 12 hours. We took careful notes for their future therapist.

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3640)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 7:47 PM

haha. None of my kids would take a binky and none of them sucked their thumbs. I don't remember any major withdrawals from nursing or the bottle either.

It must have been the benadryl.

Redwingchick  (Level: 91.1 - Posts: 419)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 8:21 PM

The sleepover thing might work. Throw her a slumber party with all her little friends. Or just one friend. If that doesn't work I don't know what will.

Salzypat  (Level: 162.6 - Posts: 5425)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 11:22 PM

one nice thing about pacifiers, when the child gets to be 2 or so you can just "lose" the pacifier. Of course, there is that period of "air raid sirens" when you go that route

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2812)
Wed, 15th Aug '07 11:27 PM

Hard to "lose" a thumb, though. Without authorities getting interested, anyway.

Geophile  (Level: 168.3 - Posts: 1553)
Thu, 16th Aug '07 1:10 AM

LOL, Smoke!

Smaug  (Level: 145.4 - Posts: 2763)
Thu, 16th Aug '07 1:21 AM

My wife had a binky at age 26.

It was incredibly sexy.

Rowlanda  (Level: 70.0 - Posts: 2853)
Thu, 16th Aug '07 5:41 AM

And of course your daughter could be pre-adolescent....
Just trying it on to see what her mother does when she
can't stop daughter from doing something.
I seem to remember my two doing those sort of things when
they were about 9 or 10....and now they are nearly 40.

If she IS testing you, the less attention you give to it
the better !!!! Either positive or negative.
Maybe she'll grow out of it....
Maybe she'll get to pay for her own Orthodontia, when she's
older and doesn't like her teeth!!!!

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