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3-year-old and thumb sucking
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3-year-old and thumb sucking

My son turned 3 in February and sucks his thumb anytime he is tired or embarrased.  Does anyone have any suggestions on getting him to stop?  He is very strong willed, so we are trying not to make much of an issue.  We are afraid he will do it just because he knows we want him to stop.  Everything has to be his idea.
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141601_tn?1264732309
my son will be 4 in july and is also strong willed and will do something if we say not to infact that is how we get him to try new foods we will put it infront of him and say don't you eat that and of course he eats it now if you tell him to eat it he won't touch it. my son sucks his thumb when he isn't feeling good and i personallly don't think there is any harm in it as long as he doesn't do it all the time
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150937_tn?1235947480
my ds was never a thumb sucker ....until....baby brother came along.  my 1st ds was 1-1/2 when he became a big bro. and he started to suck his thumb.   we were constantly nagging him to stop because their were "BUGS" on it...it didn't stop him until one day (about 6 months later) he was STUNG by a BEE....and he didn't like BUGS...and we told him that the bugs would get in his tummy if he didn't stop sucking his thumb...it really did work...he instantly STOPPED.    Good luck to you!
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192918_tn?1199454779
I know this may sound cruel but it worked for my cousin.  She would only suck her thumb when she was tired and at night.  So...my aunt would tape her index finger and thumb together as bedtime drew close.  It was too much effort my my tired little cousin to fight it, so eventually she just gave up.  This was a last resort - my aunt had tried everything else!!  I think the story is pretty funny now...especially since it worked :)
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195648_tn?1231815718
Taping fingers together seems cruel and unwarranted..  
Studies show that as long as they stop it before their 4-6 years old, it's fine.  It's best to stop before their adult teeth come in.
Most children will stop on their own especially when they go to school and they see others not doing it.
I say let it happen naturally.
  
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13167_tn?1327197724
Is there some reason he has to stop sucking his thumb for comfort?  
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Avatar_f_tn
I was a thumb sucker until I was 9 yo! My parents never bothered making me stop and eventually all kids grow out of it. Are any of your coworkers still sucking their thumbs? I did need braces though as a result. Personally, I'd just let it go for now and maybe readdress the issue in a year or so.
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Avatar_f_tn
My son sucked his thumb nonstop...watching TV, sleepy, upset, bored - whenever!  I worried that we would NEVER get him to quit.  I never tried anything actively to MAKE him quit.  He is now 24 (years) and really no longer sucks his thumb!  (HA).  His teeth are fine.  His eating habits are fine.  His disposition is fine.  Don't stress.  He will probably do it on his own, as did mine.  One day when he was between 5 and 6 I realized he no longer sucked his thumb.  there are WAY more important things to worry about than that.  Let him break the habit in his own time, on his own terms....

Good luck
G
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Avatar_f_tn
There is no reason that he has to stop.  It's just that I teach kindergarten and have had kids that walk around all day with their thumb in their mouth.  It drives me crazy.  I am worried that my son will be like that.  Our baby girl is due in August and I am afraid that he will do it even more then.  He will start pre-k the next fall and I just don't want him to still be sucking his thumb.  I just thought I would ask for suggestions.  I am definitely, or ever will be to the point, of taping his fingers together.
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Avatar_n_tn
If you don't notice anything changing on the shape of his face and teeth, there is probably nothing to worry about. My 3-year old also ***** her thumb only when she is tired or bored, but she does it with so much pressure that she has caluses on the thumb AND her teeth and face are already showing the effects of it. It makes me a little angry that I followed everyone's advice not to do anything about it... What I learned from this experience is that no advice is good for everyone.
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Avatar_f_tn
I went the route of "let it happen naturally" and as a result I have a 12 yo and a 17 yo you can find with thumbs in their mouths at night.  what are their wives going to think???? YIKES! Try something while you can!
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Avatar_m_tn
I am sick of all these parents who are afraid to make their children do anything!  Thats why we have a large increase in defective kids that have no manors or respect.  Spank them when they need it and make them stop sucking their thumb if they need it.  Don't let them get away with what ever they want and hope they turn out to be a good kid because chances are, they won't.  Today's society need all the help it can get.
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