Sucking on fingers, whether on the hand or on the foot, is a primary reflex that, at times, is maintained for two reasons. The first has to do with the relationship that the child establishes with custom and pleasure it produces. The child may also resort to thumb sucking when you need to relax.
For example, the habit of thumb sucking arises as a support when falling asleep. Another reason refers to situations in which there may be some difficulty in the psychomotor development of children, due to poor stimulation. That will manifest itself through habit, through repetitive action.
Generally, this type of behavior remains rather for the first mentioned reason, which requires ingenuity and creativity on the part of parents and / or caregivers, to control and remove this bad habit. Both parents and caregivers can and should interfere in these cases. For example, if the child falls asleep with his finger in his mouth, one of the first steps to take is try to replace the habit with another that can not cause physical harm.
So that the child does not change the habit of using his hands, give him a doll or another toy that the child likes. It is necessary that a little friend, a companion for your rest. Massaging the child's hands or stroking his hair as a way to relax him can be a positive alternative to help him break the bad habit. It is more convenient to substitute a bad habit for a good one than to employ punishments and prohibitions.
Classic home methods, such as putting bitter substances on the finger or tape are not highly recommended. Children will interpret it as a punishment, increasing their fear and reinforcing their behavior.
Children usually kick the habit of thumb or finger sucking between two and four years of age. The persistence of this habit after the age of four can favor the appearance of dental problems. It can compromise the correct position of the teeth.
There are many cases in which the upper teeth are more protruding than the others. In this case, with patience and a lot of effort, it is necessary to induce the child to quit the habit.
Katam of Jalab Atamatak. Psychology
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