Does Thumb Sucking Damage Teeth?

About Baby Teeth“Do all kids suck their thumb, or is my kid unusual?” asks a worried mom, but the pediatrician assures her it is normal for most babies and toddlers to suck their thumbs, in fact, they also like to suck on their fingers, hands, or items such as pacifiers, especially while they are teething.  Generally, most children stop sucking their thumb on their own at age 3 to 6 years.

For adults, who are taught at an early age to keep germy hands off the face, especially during cold and flu season, the idea of thumb-sucking and the spread of germs is pretty horrifying, especially if you are a germaphobe.

Why do Babies Suck Their Thumbs?

Babies have a natural urge to suck, and this urge usually decreases after the age of 6 months.  Many babies continue sucking their thumbs as a means to soothe themselves and continue the habit as toddlers, as a means to comfort themselves when they feel hungry, afraid, restless, quiet, sleepy, or are bored.

How Long Is It “Socially Acceptable” For a Child to Suck Their Thumb?

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