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Thumb Sucking

Like many parents, you may be concerned if your child sucks their thumb, and may be worried about the long-term effect and dental problems that thumb sucking can cause.

Why do children suck their thumb?

Sucking is a natural reflex for children; sucking on thumbs or fingers may make babies feel secure and happy. Young children may also suck to soothe themselves and help them fall asleep. Many children stop sucking on their own, but some find it difficult and some even continue into to adulthood. According to research about 12.5% of children aged 7-11 years still suck their thumbs, so you are not alone.

How does sucking thumb affect children’s teeth?

One of the main problems with thumb sucking is how it can affect the child’s teeth. Once a child’s permanent teeth come in, sucking may cause problems with the proper growth of the mouth and alignment of the teeth. Some children who suck their thumb vigorously may even develop problems with their baby teeth as well as their permanent teeth.

The longer the thumb sucking continues, the more difficult any problems maybe to correct and often teeth remain poorly aligned for life, and it can be more difficult to correct teeth misalignment caused by thumb sucking. Dummies can affect the teeth in the same way as digit sucking, but it is often an easier and quicker habit to break. It can be more difficult to correct malocclusion in thumb sucking teeth.

The intensity of the sucking is a factor that determines whether or not dental problems may follow later in life. In the event that children rest their thumbs latently in their mouths, they are probably going to cause fewer issues than the individuals who aggressively suck their thumbs. Some forceful thumb suckers may create issues with their infant (essential) teeth and additionally their grown-up teeth.

Can thumb sucking spread the germs in my household?

Anything we do to help the virus get from the outside into the moist parts of the face (eyes, mouth, nose) is going to increase the chances of infection. Thumbsie® can make giving up quick and easy so reducing the chances of infection and cross contamination. Make sure your children know how to wash their hands thoroughly.

What Should I Do To Help My Child Stop thumb sucking?

Trying to stop a child thumb sucking can be a tough habit to break. Try to praise your child for not sucking rather than getting cross when they do. Try to use positive reinforcements. Most thumb suckers are unaware that they are doing it.

There may be a reason why your child is sucking, try to investigate the cause. Some children find it a source of comfort when they are facing a problem, the unknown or are anxious. Try to invest some time to understand why they might be sucking. Offer them help and find a solution that works for you both.

You could ask your dentist to explain the effects of prolonged thumb sucking to your child and maybe even show them some pictures on the internet of poorly aligned teeth. Your dentist should be able to offer you support too.

How can Thumbsie® help?

A Thumbsie® fabric guard can help prevent thumb and finger sucking as it is a gentle and effective way to help your child to give up sucking. It is available in thumb and finger guards and in 5 different sizes. The Thumbsie® glove should be worn day and night until the habit is broken. The evidence is clear in the recent blog: Thumbsies® help children to stop thumb sucking.

What do dentists think about Thumbsie®?

British dentists are backing Thumbsie® because it is an effective way of stopping thumb and finger sucking which can lead to long-term damage to teeth and worryingly mouth shape, speech formation and even affect a child’s smile.

Dr. Kotecha of Glen Dental says “I love the Thumbsie® – it works every time I recommend it! The Thumbsie® provides a fun way for a dentist or parent to help the child stop sucking because after all, it’s a hard habit to kick. There are so many different designs, kids get so excited to choose one and when they get it, they can’t wait to get started. Thank you Thumbsie®!”

Read what more dentists are saying about Thumbsie®.

In 2019 Thumbsie® was recognised for excellence and  awarded Innovation of the Year at the Dental Industry Awards, for pushing the boundaries of the dental profession. In May 2020 Thumbsie® was accredited by the Oral Health Foundation.

Grey stars thumb sucking guard for children
Grey Star Thumbsie® Thumb Guard
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For more specific information on any of our products, you might like to visit our FAQ’s page and also read our Thumbsie® Google reviews.

There are particular aspects of this habit that people want to discuss and understand more fully. If you would like any more information on thumb sucking and related issues, you may wish to read through our advice pages:

Further articles to read:

Love Heart Thumbsie® Thumb sucking Guard
Love Heart Thumbsie® Thumb Guard
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You're in safe hands

The best thing about winning a 2021 MadeForMums award is that all products were tested by children and their parents. It's good to know you're in safe hands. Buy now

Thumbsie® wins Innovation of the Year at the Dental Industry Awards

We are proud to have won Innovation of the Year in the National Dental Industry Awards, Best Business Women Awards for Best Consumer Business 2019 and Best Product in Family Network National Awards 2020.
Dental Industry Awards Innovation of the Year Winner Best Consumer Business Winner TFNlogoWinner2020
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Grey Flower Thumbsie® Thumb sucking Guard
Grey Flower Thumbsie® Thumb Guard
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"Great product and easy to use, it worked a treat." Petra Chicken Customer Reviews

Don’t just take our word for it, watch the video and hear from the children who stopped thumb sucking with Thumbsie®.

Or see what their parent's are saying
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