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Oral Fixation
My child is six years old and likes to put everything in his mouth.  He chews on his shirts, eats crayons constantly at school, bites his nails, chews off tops of erasers, eats crushed ice all the time, etc, etc. Any advice for me on how to suppress his urge to do this.  My son has been disciplned for this several times at home, but nothing seems to work.  He is now starting to get in trouble at school and I am running out of ideas.
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973741 tn?1342346373
It is a way for children to soothe themselves.  Does he do it when he is anxious, worried, excited or trying to relax?  My son does it too.  As I said, the mouth is directly linked to soothing.  (know any adults that chew lots of gum?  Same thing.)  I'd talk first and see if anything is bothering him and if you decide that it is normal stuff (as it is with my child)---  our ot gives him acceptable ways to do it.  For example, do give him a piece of gum. a water bottle that he has to suck out of, drink apple sauce or smoothie through a straw (or any thick liquid), anything chewy like a fruit treat, etc.  They make these things designed just for this purpose that are rubber too.  On line you could find those.  In school, teachers will give kids a coffee stirrer that they can throw away afterwards.  This is not too uncommon but I agree annoying.  I wouldn't discipline him for it though.  He is trying to work his anxiety out in a natural way.  If he has other issues along with this, you can look into it further.

  If school is a problem I'd talk to his teacher.  I'd get the box of straws or coffee stirrers for her if she won't provide them.  And  make a rule about outside items (toys, etc.) from school or elsewhere can not go in his mouth.  Alternatives may help him follow this rule.  They even make tips that they put on the end of pencils for an oral guy like your son.  So keep working on it and find out what the underlying cause is But give him an acceptable outlet in the meantime.  Good luck.
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Thanks for your input.  I very much appreciate it.  I will explore a few of the options you mentioned.  
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Any ideas about webistes carrying some of these tools
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973741 tn?1342346373
there are many places to buy these items.  One online store is ***@****.  

But you could also google----z vibe oral tool
                                          thera-tubing (used to make necklaces or bracelets to chew on)
                                          ARK grabbers or textured chewy
                                          chewy tubes

They make all kinds of things like this and they come from many sources.  Good luck.  I've bought from the therapy shop and the therapy source (two companies) as well as my local occupational therapy office (they can help too.)
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our daughter is 2 and she likes to chew on wood are trying to stop her cause we do not want her to get hurt any sugestions plz cause we have tried everything and she always chews on the wood like a baby gate or crib rail (even though she is in a toddler bed she still likes to chew on her sisters crib we do not know what to do
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My son is 14, has ADHD and has always put things in his mouth! I don't know what to do! He started sucking his thumb again. He ALWAYS HAS to have something in his mouth! He picks up ANYTHING and EVERYTHING and starts chewing! I'm afraid he is going to choke on something one day! We just started back to counseling but his oral fixation is unlike anything I've ever seen! Any ideas?
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973741 tn?1342346373
What about just having some things for him to chew on such as a coffee stirrer??  Those are easy to have and often can easily be written into an IEP----  if he is self soothing orally, that is an appropriate way for him to get the release.  They also make things that go on the ends of pencils and pens for at school at therapy supply stores (many online ones such as Therapy Shoppe).  I would try to provide him with things that are acceptable to chew on.  At home, they make things like rubber p's or t's that he can use.  No, doesn't look that cool but if he is mouthing everything anyway, might as well give him a tool to use at home.  My theory is that the more they have in settings like home, the less they need when with other people/school.  good luck
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