How to Stop your child from sucking

A lot of children suck but here are some tips for parents to help their children from sucking.

Talk to your child.

Having a simple conversation with your child may be enough to help him or her get on the right path to stopping the habit.

Encourage your child.

Breaking a habit is hard for a child to do, so it’s very important to encourage your child every step of the way. Remind your child how good it will feel to be a “big girl” or a “big boy.”

Figure out your child’s triggers.

Your child may be sucking his or her fingers in response to stress or anxiety or it could be a natural reflex that’s become a habit.

Pay attention to your child’s behaviors before and after sucking his or her fingers to help identify specific triggers for sucking.

Eliminate triggers.

Once you’ve had a chance to identify any triggers that cause your child to suck his or her thumbs, you can slowly begin to get rid of them. Giving your child the comfort or activity he or she needs and/ or desires can be an important step to breaking the habit.

Reward your child.

If your child is meeting goals or has stopped sucking his or her fingers, reward him or her! You don’t have to do anything elaborate, just a small gesture such as an extra bedtime story, a trip to the park, or a small toy can help show your child you are proud of his or her accomplishment.

In addition, it will help reinforce the lessons you are teaching your child about not sucking his or her fingers

Distract your child.

In addition to children feeling anxiety or stress, bored children often suck their fingers. Providing your child ample activities and diversions can help distract the child from sucking on his or her fingers. Make sure your distractions are appropriate to day- or nighttime sucking habits.

Cover the child’s hands.

The texture or even size of the covered hand can help get the child out of the habit of sucking on fingers in any situation.

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