Expert says that children should stop thumb-sucking at a specific age 1 year ago

Expert says that children should stop thumb-sucking at a specific age

Is your little one a thumb-sucker?

Many children use this as a means of self-soothing but as they grow older, it can be a difficult habit to nip in the bud.

However, if they continue thumb-sucking past a certain age, it can be detrimental to their speech and according to one expert, it can interfere with how their teeth develop.

Dr Mia Finkelston says that children sucking their thumbs is fine during infancy and in most cases, it stops around the two-year milestone when kids start to become more "self-sufficient".

The family GP explained to Pop Sugar that parents only have cause for worry when the habit 'interferes with the child's functioning, whether it's physically, emotionally, or socially'.

Dr Finkleston stresses that parents shouldn't treat thumb-sucking as if it's a 'bad' habit and try instead to focus on 'positive' aspects of your little one's behaviour.

By following her advice, you'll be able to build your son or daughter's self-confidence every step of the way.

'This will build self-confidence as well as provide the healthy attention and nurturance the child craves as they develop.

'A child that actively tries to restrain his or her thumb-sucking habit should be given more praise and encouragement'.

It's also something that you can discuss with your own family doctor but remember that every child is unique and there's no right/wrong formula for how to bring them up.

You can look to guidelines for help but ultimately it's you, mama, that your little one will look to and that's a special role to have.