Facts About Thumb Sucking

sucking thumbThumb sucking has been known as a common habit developed by kids at a very early age. Some consider it as a bad habit and may force kids to stop doing it. But it is a habit that has been known to be done by babies even while still in the womb. Babies usually have a strong urge to suck their thumbs in the first six months outside of the womb.

The cause of thumb sucking or the reason behind it remains unknown to doctors. But there are certain studies that show thumb sucking to be a means to compensate for a baby being breastfed by the mother. Doctors have also discovered that babies who thumb suck at an early age seem to fall asleep more easily than those who do not. Babies who thumb suck are also more able to put themselves back to sleep at night more easily even when disturbed. Not only that, babies who suck their thumbs also seem to sleep earlier than those babies who do not.

Although some kids may carry the habit when they grow older, thumbsucking seems to be a habit that goes away with 94 percent of kids by their first birthday. Parents should not be so concerned about their babies habit to thumb suck at so early an age since this habit most often goes away on its own as kids age.

A surprising fact that parents should know about thumb sucking is that forcing the thumb out of the kids mouth may actually encourage the behavior even more. Researchers have looked into the history of late thumb suckers and they found out something in common to a majority of them. It seems that late thumb suckers have a prolonged history of battling with the habit at an earlier age. Well-meaning parents may try to stop babies from sucking their thumbs by trying to force it out of their mouths. But this action seems to encourage children to even continue the behavior.

Doctors advise that the best way to deal with thumb sucking is to ignore it. Giving a child a pacifier may also help keep children from sucking their thumbs. But parents should try to refrain from scolding or punishing their kids because of thumb sucking. Doing so will only make it worse.