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How can I get my daughter to stop sucking her fingers?

My daughter just turned 7 yesterday. When she is watching tv, riding in the car or going to sleep, she sucks on her first and second fingers of her right hand. We have tried some different techniques and have gotten nowhere. Her doctor doesn't seem concerned. I am concerned that her teeth are going to get messed up. Please please help me.


Asked by KMorris7159 at 2:08 PM on Sep. 14, 2010 in General Parenting

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Answers (7)
  • Bribery? When I was 6 my parents told me that if I stopped sucking my thumb, I could pick out what ever I wanted at the toy store. My mom set up a calendar in my room. Every night we checked off the day if I didn't suck. When I got to 2 weeks straight I got my prize. If I didn't do it that day, we started over. I have pleasant memories of this. I picked out a $3 jump rope!

    Answer by mompam at 2:11 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • You could try having her wear a mitten or glove on that hand at those times- this would remind her about stopping. The problem with sucking her hand is that she is eating germs doing this. So you could say It is OK if you suck your fingers, but wash your hands carefully first. It sounds yucky, but if you can help her learn about nasties such as pinworms that she can get if her hands touch the eggs and then she sucks on them, then it might discourage her. I bought a cheap magnifier online- it is tube shaped and you set one end of the tube over the item and it magnifies it much more than a magnifying glass, I showed my sons the eggs on a dead bug. Until then they really didn't have a concept of things smaller than the eye can see.

    Answer by Bmat at 2:23 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • If they aren't messed up by now it may not be an issue. Teeth usually get out of alignment when they come in. You can talk to the dentist next time and he can talk to your daughter.


    Answer by Gailll at 2:11 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • You can try that bitter stuff that people use to stop their pets from chewing stuff. Its called bitter yuck or bitter apple and its non-toxic adn wont harm your daughter. But i warn you if you get it on your fingers you will be tasting it for a while. lol but its an idea

    Answer by tmma_the_witch at 2:11 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • try to get to the bottom of why she is still sucking her fingers. maybe for her its like a security blanket/defense mechanism. tell her how you feel and ask her why she wont stop. good luck to you :)

    Answer by americanadian25 at 2:12 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • Dont worry Mom! She will be fine! She will stop on her own... Let her grow up in her own sweet time.

    Answer by mistie3480 at 2:14 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • My sister sucked her fingers until she was about 9 or 10 years old. It was a habit from birth and a hard one to kick for her but once she realized that it wasn't cute anymore, she eventually stopped. My parents tried everything but it was ultimately my sisters decision to quit. The doctors werent concerned because they knew she would eventually grow out of it..I also have a cousin who will suck her fingers and she's grown...but she only does it in the privacy of her own home...

    Answer by mom2mybabes at 4:36 PM on Sep. 14, 2010