11 answers

How Do I Stop My Son from Sucking His Thumb.

Hi. My 15 month-old son constantly sucks his thumb. He was never into the pacifier but since about 2 months he started sucking his thumb and never stopped every chance he gets. I'd really like him to stop since there are already marks on his thumb and sometimes even blister, but I don't know how to stop him. Any suggestions?

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So What Happened?™

Well, these are all very interesting suggestions! The hot sauce idea is something i have heard in the past, and my sister used it for her baby and his pacifier...it worked with the pacifier, but I was told that something bitter is better than hot sauce for the thumb. I would love to try that stuff that some of you suggested (the one that looks like nail polish bottle) so will see if I can find it.
I don't think, however, that it has anything to do with my insecurities during pregnancy, we had a pretty happy pregnancy and I also have a sonogram picture of him sucking his thumb. But I really do not want him to grow up sucking his thumb. Thank you all for taking your time to respond to my question...it really gave me some ideas!

Featured Answers

You know I have two thumb suckers...LOL...Lucky Me and I'm glad you posted on thumb suckers cause I can't get my 5 year old and 3 year old to stop...Yep I have a 5 yearold that sucks her thumb.

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My 20 month old loves his thumb too, but mostly when he goes to bed. He constantly has blisters on his thumb and once it was a blood blister and I took him to the doctor and they said not to worry about it. I've tried the hot sauce suggestion, but my son likes it. He takes mittens off his hands, so I am not for sure of what else I can do. I never had the other 2 kids sucking their thumbs, and none of the 3 were pacifier babies.


When my son was little (18 years ago) I wanted to break him of his thumb sucking. There was a product called "Thumb Suck". You put it on the thumb and it makes the thumb taste terrible. It was safe and broke him pretty quickly.

Just check the baby department at Wal-mart or similar stores. You should find a similar product there, in a small bottle, like nail polish.

Good Luck

Hi S.!

When I was little I remember my mom bought a medicine to put on my thumb so I would stop the sucking. And it WORKED! That stuff is bitter! I think its the same product the last post was about. Its safe, give it a try!

You know I have two thumb suckers...LOL...Lucky Me and I'm glad you posted on thumb suckers cause I can't get my 5 year old and 3 year old to stop...Yep I have a 5 yearold that sucks her thumb.

Hi, S., you migth think my suggestion in a little extrange but here it goes, i remeber when i was a child i grew up with my grand mother therebore iam use old remedies, have you tried to put some hot souce on his thumb, every time you see him with thumb in his mouth, just a littlebut you have to be constant about, and make sure he doesnt rubb his eyes with that hand, another way try putting mittens, specially and nigth
he wont like the texture of, and hopefully it will register and associate the unpleasenes for it, and stop.

I was a thumb sucker as a child... i think I sucked my thumb until I was 8 or something ridiculous. I was lucky and had no issues with my teeth, but I know this is really the ONLY reason for concern over this issue. I'm in agreement with you, I don't think it has anything to do with your mental state during pregnancy. Some kids suck thumbs, some babies are colicky, some take on other individualities. I wouldn't worry about it too much - definitely encourage him to stop, but if he doesn't, don't lose sleep over it.

If you can't find "Thumb Suck", Sally Hansen's Nail Biter is essentially the same thing... concept being... put it on their thumb and it tastes horrible and they don't like it so they stop. Just for record, my mom tried stuff like that with me, I picked it off and sucked my thumb anyway.



I'll be the opposite voice,lol.
let him :-)
ok there are blisters but you'd think that would make it painful enough for him to stop eventually?
I'd look it up at www.askdrsears.com
I hope this helps a bit :-)

Hello! I am a dental assistant and I work in a pediatric dental office. Thumb sucking is common with toddlers. In our office we suggest to all parents that around the age of 3, is when children are at the appropriate time to begin understanding right from wrong. At age 3, is your child is still sucking their thumb, then this is the time that you need to start explaining the them why it's a "yucky" habit. Explain it in terms that they understand. Reward them and praise them often when you see that they don't have the thumb in their mouth. At around age 4-5 if they are still sucking their thumbs, then try the "calendar method". Place a calendar of some sorts where your child can see it all the time. Tell your child that for every day that you don't speak to them about the thumb in their mouth, you put a star, smiley, sticker, or whatever they want on the calendar. After a set amount of days with stickers and such, they get a small prize. Then set a specific amount of time to get a bigger prize. Rewarding and praise are important to our young children. Sauces, wraps, and such are not useful in most children. I've hear everything from band-aids, and thumb splints, which the children eventually work off if they really want to suck their thumb. Around age 5 if your child is still sucking their thumb, some pediatric dentists can make an oral appliance that's cemented into their mouth and keeps the thumb away from the roof of their mouths and away from their teeth. I worked in an orthodontic office, I have see what long term thumb sucking can do to a childs mouth. It's not cheap to correct! And other questions please feel to contact me. Best of Luck to All..

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