Stop Thumbsucking Before The First Day of Kindergarten

Kim Conte
Big Kid
8

back to school guidestop thumbsucking before kindergartenOne anonymous mom is worried about getting her son to stop sucking his thumb before starting kindergarten. She's tried the usual deterrents—hot sauce, lemon juice, Band Aids, and vinegar—but nothing has worked so far. Here's what some CafeMoms suggested to do instead:

tyfry7496: Ignore it! He will stop when he is ready. He will not be teased at school because he probably won't do it at school. The more you bring it up, the more he will suck his thumb...Just let it go.

Jewjewbee: My girlfriend put ace bandages on her kids' elbows for intermittent hours throughout the day. They couldn't bend the arms. Weird. Strangest thing I ever saw, but it worked.

Mesha125: The only thing that has helped us with my son is getting a permanent marker and drawing little smiley faces on his thumbs. He loves them! I told him if he sucks them they will come off. They need to be redrawn after washing hands and all, but this has helped us.

07lilmama1108: I sucked my thumb until just before kindergarten. My parents bribed me! I wanted my ears pierced and the deal was as soon as I stopped sucking my thumb I could have them pierced! Maybe do something like that: Give something he would love to have!

Slyviasmommy: My little girl just turned 6, and she STILL sucks her thumb. She will be going into first grade this year. But here is the deal: She was ALWAYS doing it...until she went to school and then it changed. She would not do it at school unless she was REALLY tired. Now, she has let off a little bit and only sucks it before bedtime or if she is sleepy. I think you should stop doing all these things to make him stop. He will eventually grow out of it and stop himself.

Mom2BOYZnDad: What worked for me and my pacifier boys is this: When they were around 3 or 4 I showed them a bright colorful calender and told them that every day they didn't use the "paci" or "pice," they could pick a cool sticker to put on it for that day. And once they filled up the whole month with stickers they could get a real big special "treat" or "prize" that mommy and daddy would surprise them with. I believe it ended up being a trip to Chuck E Cheese or something like that, and it was heaven for them. And the pacifier was no more. Not to say there weren't days of them saying "Where's my pice?" I'd just have to say, "I have it, but if you take it, no sticker, and no treat." It kept them on track. Now I know you can't just throw away a thumb, but maybe the thought of "big kid" stickers and a "big kid" reward will work.

Did you try to stop your child from thumbsucking or did you let her/him just grow out of it?

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