Tuesday, July 17, 2012

What cured Rocco's thumbsucking

Rocco thumbsucking at 5months old.
If I remember it correctly, Rocco started thumbsucking when he was around 5 months old. I guess it was triggered by his early teething. He would constantly rub his gums and poke on his mouth, and voila, he discovered that he could suck his thumb, and it would give him comfort and relief. At first, I would gently remove his thumb, or divert his attention so he would forget about the sucking mannerism. But it grew worse, until he could not sleep unless he had his thumb on his mouth.

I did some research and it says the major drawback of longterm thumbsucking is poor jaw alignment that may result to crooked teeth. That I do not believe, because my sister is a living testament that hard-core thumbsuckers can have perfect teeth. It was her "hard-to-let go" mannerism, and would instead result to a keloid on her thumb. I do not want Rocco to have that keloid, aside from the social and psychological impact of seeing a grown boy thumbsucking because he could not quit the habit later in his life.

I did not want Rocco to develop this into a bad habit, so Sieg & I decided to let him use a pacifier instead of his thumb. We bought Dr.Brown's orthopedic pacifier, and it was money wasted. Rocco would not take it. Simply put, he doesn't like a pacifier. It actually got me thinking how other babies would be easily comforted with a pacifier, yet my baby is doing everything he can think of to refuse the pacifier. 

Then he got sick...with a hard cough...and it made breathing so hard. I didn't realize it at first until he got well, and then I observed that he just stopped thumbsucking. I thought it was temporary, but days passed by and he didn't look for his thumb at all, especially during sleeping time. I guess it also helped that we gave him a hard teether which he bites on every now and then.

Amazing how one sickness cured another (if you think thumbsucking is a sickness). Either way, I'm glad  it's all OK now, at least I would not have to stress about it in the future.

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