34 answers

My 7 Year Old Girl Chews on everything....help!!!!

I need help, my daughter is 7 and still chews on everything. We have had to cut her hair so she cant chew on it , she has had pin worms and is constantly sick. She puts everything in her mouth, shirts, toys, backpack straps...etc I have had a full panel of blood work done and it all came back normal. we have tried throwing the toys that she chews on away, rewarding her , is it a nervous habit or does she have some sensory issues? .... I need some help...please , it is a never ending battle, and it is causing health problems.

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A.! I thought I was the only one! My son is 8 years old and does the VERY same thing! I don't know what to do. When he was younger, and after he licked the carpeting in a hotel room (gag!) and licked the outside wall of a sports arena - I finally took him to the doctor. The doc thought it might be lead poisoning. It wasn't. That was about 4 years ago. Still, I have no idea what is wrong, either.

Hello A., My daughter is about to be 13 next week. She did the same thing. I gave her a baby toy that she could chew on only in her bed. It wasnt allowed out of there. After a few months she stopped wanting to chew on things. She has completely out grown it! I hope that helps. Have a blessed day!

It could be neverousness or a habit. I chew on things(straws, pens, candy) when I do not feel good or getting sick. Have you tried giving her a couple of options of things that it is ok to chew on? It doesnt sound like she is being mean to spite you.

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Hello A., My daughter is about to be 13 next week. She did the same thing. I gave her a baby toy that she could chew on only in her bed. It wasnt allowed out of there. After a few months she stopped wanting to chew on things. She has completely out grown it! I hope that helps. Have a blessed day!

I have 3 girls 9,7,and 18 mnths. I am also a proud aunt of 3 nieces ages 7,3,and 16 mnths. As with any advice I always tell the person that if they are seriously concerned with their childs behavior to seek a professionals opinion.
My 7 year old niece has a simular problem. Shes always putting stuff in her mouth. Straps, shoestrings, stuffed animals, ect.. But she has a serious condition. She suffers from the disease autism. I'm not saying your child has that by no means. Her therapist has given my Sister some at home therapy to try and sometimes it works and sometimes it dosnt.
You probably need to ask your doctor about some tactics to nip this in the bud, due to the fact your daughter too suffers illnesses such as pin worms.

Please if you find a solution please let me know. My son is 6 and I am going through the samething. He has put holes in his shits.
I'm 30, have a 6year old son, been with my boyfriend for 3 years.

It's great that you are starting now on helping your daughter with this. There are 2 excellent books out there that will both help you to gain a better understanding of where the need to chew comes from and give you fun examples on how to address it...and take some of the stress off : ) They are The Out of Sync Child and The Out of Sync Child has Fun...excellent sources to help balance what, for a variety of reasons, is out of balance. Try, if you can, to have fun with it, and she will not even know it is work and not play. Involve your whole family as much as you can if they too can have fun with it. As an OT and a mom, I have seen great results from this approach. Good luck and good job on persevering. C.

Can you try giving her sugarfree gum or straws to chew on instead of the other stuff? Maybe just giving her options besides clothes and toys will help until she grows out of this stage. Also, does she have sinus problems? When my allergies and sinuses are bad it makes my teeth hurt, chewing on something relieves that pain. I would also have her wash her hands often and use sanitizer when there's no soap and water around.

I see quite a few wonderful responses! I wanted to let you know that I was a child like this. I was (am) not Autistic, ADD, ADHD or dysfunctional psychologically. There's just so many more resources for us as parents now that our parents didn't have! Our family doctor gave my mother a "safe list" - things that I could chew safely and also talked to my teachers at school. All this came about because I had a teacher that was determined to "fix" me and would not let me chew on anything or touch my mouth -- it was a horrid, frightening, out-of-control experience for me, so be careful not to take things away from your daughter trying to "fix" her.

Have her vitamin and mineral levels evaluated by your regular doctor. If everything is normal, she may just have an oral sensory fixation. We all have ways we sooth, this just happens to be a very obvious one that can be safely channeled. Good luck and please tell your daughter there is nothing wrong with her and she will grow up to be perfectly "normal" ;)

I would say, does she need vitamins and minerals?

If I had to guess I would say she may have some sensory issues. My almost 6 year old daughter has some of those herself. She is a chewer too. It is frustrating, I know. Books, her nails, dolls hands and feet, and paper products of any kind are all fair game. She used to chew her hair too but doesn't do that as often anymore. She wants to eat constantly too. We don't let her but she is constantly "hungry" and "thirsty". It's the same need for oral stimulation that makes her chew things. Here's a very good website that has a checklist of symptoms. http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.com/index.html .
Best Wishes,
E.

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