Baby Hints & Tips

Stopping thumb sucking

What worked for you to stop your child sucking their thumb? We have a mum desperate for ideas.

  • The nail stuff worked on me as a kid. Years of thumb sucking and I only had to taste that crap once and I never did it again! Alison
  • We gave our boy a dummy it’s easier to take a dummy away than a thumb Megan
  • It depends on how old your child is. My son sucked 2 fingers until he was 4. He was starting to get nasty callouses and it was becoming an issue as he went to pre-kinder (germs/bugs, not that I’m a germaphobe). A small piece of plastic type medical tape on each finger (at the top) and helped to remind him not to suck them. Only took a few days and he no longer sucked them. No tears of anything either, just gentle reminders. Belinda
  • Gave my little man a blankie to suck in instead! Rachael
  • Bandaid! We put a bandaid on her thumb for 2 weeks and by then she stopped. Tears on the first night but we gave her a sticker every time she didnt suck her thumb the whole night. We had a video monitor in her room so no lying haha Ashlea
  • The nail stuff may work. It didn’t when I was a kid. It is a comfort thing. Maybe try find a new comfort for your little one. They will grow out of it Kaitlyn
  • Try putting the fingernail stuff for anti nail biting on their thumbs. That way, it will taste gross when they go to suck on it Teagan
  • My advice is to stop being frustrated. It’s a comfort thing and to a toddler this world is big and scary. Try pharmacy stuff but determined thumb suckers will suck regardless. It’s something they have to choose to give up. It’s like asking how do I stop my spouse from smoking. You don’t unless they want to give it up. Thumb sucking reassures them and comforts them. The best strategy is to kick it in the bud before they start. This is why I prefer dummies. Encourage but know the child may do it without being fully aware they are. It’s a habit now so it’ll be difficult to change. Nothing but time worked for someone I knew. They continued until at least 15/16 yrs Melissa

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