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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Sucking Thumb, Putting Spit On Hands And On Toys??? What To Do????
Unregistered 09:46 AM 11-24-2011
I have a daycare child who has been coming to me now for almost 2 years. This child does not know how to play! All this child can do is either walk around with thumb in mouth, toys in mouth, licks toys or puts spit on them and wipes it around the toy GROSS!! Even puts toys in the mouth of my other toddlers AFTER having them in own mouth! :-( GRRRR!!

I have removed toys from child saying "now I have to wash it, constantly say no thumb and remove it from child mouth and have child wash hands, removed child from area and sat in a chair saying you can't play with my toys if you put them in your mouth, etc NOTHING is working. This child can not even eat lunch without thumb in mouth. This is irritating me to no end! It is so gross and the other kids play with these toys too! Now with flu season starting it is really bugging me even more!

Child is 1 month away from being 3!!!!!! Any ideas that I have not tried yet? What else can I do?

Thanks for listening.
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Unregistered 11:08 AM 11-25-2011
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
I have a daycare child who has been coming to me now for almost 2 years. This child does not know how to play! All this child can do is either walk around with thumb in mouth, toys in mouth, licks toys or puts spit on them and wipes it around the toy GROSS!! Even puts toys in the mouth of my other toddlers AFTER having them in own mouth! :-( GRRRR!!

I have removed toys from child saying "now I have to wash it, constantly say no thumb and remove it from child mouth and have child wash hands, removed child from area and sat in a chair saying you can't play with my toys if you put them in your mouth, etc NOTHING is working. This child can not even eat lunch without thumb in mouth. This is irritating me to no end! It is so gross and the other kids play with these toys too! Now with flu season starting it is really bugging me even more!

Child is 1 month away from being 3!!!!!! Any ideas that I have not tried yet? What else can I do?

Thanks for listening.
I would not tell a child not to suck their thumb. Doctor told us not to do it. It will make them want it more and its natural. I would not make a child feel bad because you have to wash the toys.......that is your job. It's normal for children to put everything in there mouth. That thumb is the child's security. Leave the child alone about it and most likely will grow out of it. Downfall is the child might need braces to align the teeth at some point.

You name it we tried it- nothing worked. Peace of mind came to us when we left the child alone, sorry don't have anything better to offer you. Some kids are just very attached to the thumb, its comfort, security, habit. Many adults keep it hidden that they suck their thumb.
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SilverSabre25 02:18 PM 11-25-2011
Are the parents on board with stopping the thumb sucking? If not, it might be hard to stop it at daycare.

The best thing to do to stop any of those bad habits is that each time you see the child with their thumb in their mouth, you tell them, as calmly and matter-of-factly as you can, "Thumb out of mouth; now you need to wash your hands." And take the child to the sink to wash their hands. Over, and over, and over, and over...and yes, it will take tens, or hundreds of repetitions. Maybe even thousands.

It's a habit, and breaking it is hard, just like any other habit.

You could possibly try getting a cheap pair of gloves and cutting off all the fingers (leaving the thumb intact). Then have the child wear the glove while at daycare, to help remind her not to suck her thumb.
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cheerfuldom 06:07 PM 11-25-2011
If it was really that bad, I personally could not keep a kid like that. Spitting/slobber/etc grosses me out even more than vomit or yucky diapers. If I had to keep a kid like that, I would make their own play area with just a few toys and make them stay in that area until they learn to stop. It is too unsanitary to have all that toy sucking, ick!
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dave4him 06:49 PM 11-25-2011
If its in reach, its in my daugthers mouth. Once i figure out how to break her of that, ill get back to you.
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Hunni Bee 08:37 PM 11-25-2011
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
I have a daycare child who has been coming to me now for almost 2 years. This child does not know how to play! All this child can do is either walk around with thumb in mouth, toys in mouth, licks toys or puts spit on them and wipes it around the toy GROSS!! Even puts toys in the mouth of my other toddlers AFTER having them in own mouth! :-( GRRRR!!

I have removed toys from child saying "now I have to wash it, constantly say no thumb and remove it from child mouth and have child wash hands, removed child from area and sat in a chair saying you can't play with my toys if you put them in your mouth, etc NOTHING is working. This child can not even eat lunch without thumb in mouth. This is irritating me to no end! It is so gross and the other kids play with these toys too! Now with flu season starting it is really bugging me even more!

Child is 1 month away from being 3!!!!!! Any ideas that I have not tried yet? What else can I do?

Thanks for listening.
Breaking a seasoned thumb sucker is hard. I don't attempt it...i just try to keep their hands busy so they're not in the kids mouth. Nannyde mentioned a mitted sweatshirt in a thread a few months ago...does anybody know which one?

I do agree with your concern about the child drooling and getting spit on everything, especially in cold and flu season. I personally can deal with poop better than spit. I would provide that child with their "own" set of washable toys until I could find a better solution, and have him/her play only with those toys. I'd be pretty pissed as one of your parents knowing my kid was playing with toys
another kid was constantly drooling on.
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nannyde 05:10 AM 11-26-2011
Originally Posted by Hunni Bee:
Breaking a seasoned thumb sucker is hard. I don't attempt it...i just try to keep their hands busy so they're not in the kids mouth. Nannyde mentioned a mitted sweatshirt in a thread a few months ago...does anybody know which one?

I do agree with your concern about the child drooling and getting spit on everything, especially in cold and flu season. I personally can deal with poop better than spit. I would provide that child with their "own" set of washable toys until I could find a better solution, and have him/her play only with those toys. I'd be pretty pissed as one of your parents knowing my kid was playing with toys
another kid was constantly drooling on.
https://www.daycare.com/forum/showthread.php?t=35347
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Ariana 08:59 AM 11-26-2011
Regardless of the thumb sucking it sounds like very unusual behavior for a nearly 3 year old child. Are there are any developmental delays? Is there anything he enjoys playing with?
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CheekyChick 07:23 AM 11-27-2011
It sounds to me you are making this child feel ashamed of their behavior which is only going to make the child feel more insecure which will only cause more thumb sucking for comfort.

Have you told the child's parents that you grab toys away, tell him/her they can't play with your toys, and make him/her sit in a different area of the room? I doubt they would be happy with that.

It seems this child is driving you nuts. I would term the child because it would clearly be in his/her best interest.
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MarinaVanessa 09:48 AM 11-27-2011
Woah, maybe I completely misread the OP but I didn't get anywhere in there that the provider is making the child feel ashamed or that she is "grabbing toys" away from the child. Yes this is "normal" behavior for most children but like other behaviors (like hitting and biting) normal doesn't have to mean acceptable. These children just need to be guided and taught.

In group care spit on toys is BAD news at it can spread germs and illness. Again, I would agree that "mouthing" is normal behavior in infants but once over 2 I really start teaching the ones that still do it that we shouldn't do it anymore. For the sake of DC I would rather have the "mouthers" use a pacifyer to self sooth and to ease their fixation if only fo rthe sake of keeping the toys out of their mouths.

My infants each have their own sets of toys that they can "mouth". I don't let kids share "mouthed" toys because it's unsanitary. They get their own play yard with their own toys. Older kids that put their hands in their mouths get a light and cheerful "Uh oh, time to wash our hands" each time they do it, even we are in the middle of a meal. Eventually they get tired of washing their hands and get over their fixation.

Toys that get put into the mouths of older kids are always the shared toys so they have to get put up and washed. If I have time I can wash them right away by spraying them with a bleach/water solution and letting them sit for 2 minutes then wiping them dry. If I don't have time then those toys get put into a basket and I'll clean them at the end of the day. It's just not hygenic to allow the other children to play with toys that have been in the mouths of other kids. I have to keep the rest of the kids healthy too and it's not like there aren't tons of other toys for the child to play with.

OP you do the same thing that I do (except I don't do time outs) and if it isn't working yet then the only thing that I can suggest is to keep trying or to shadow the child. It takes a while an you have to keep at it. You might want to even try assigning specific toys for the child to mouth. "These toys you can put in your mouth, but these toys you cannot or then we have to put them away to clean them and that would make me sad. Would that make you feel sad?" type of thing.

I only have one infant in my care right now and he's my 1yo son. He still mouths toys and to keep the other kids from touching his mouthing toys I tell the other kids that they don't want to touch his toys because "Fredo has slimed them". Actually I don't want the other kids getting germs on his toys and him getting sick, but it works. The kids don't want my son's slime and I don't want my son to get germs. When I let my son out of his play yard and he mouths toys that he shouldn't I remove it and replace it with another and put the "slimed" toy in the basket to be cleaned later.

If it continues and you try everything and keep at it but you just really can't help put a stop to it then and only then should you consider terming the child ... but for the health and best interest of the other children. Even then terminating a child over this situation is very extreme. It's better to teach the child not to mouth things or thumb suck when they are this age rather than waiting until later or terming the child.

I had classmates (twin girls) starting when I was in Kinder that both still had oral fixations that lead all the way into high-school (it could have gone on longer but I lost touch after high-school). They sucked both their index and middle fingers as kids and were never told not to at home because it was "normal" and their version of thumb sucking led to a stronger oral fixation. They sucked on their hair, the collar of their shirts, pens, pencils ... you name it ... without even knowing it. We were friends and it was so sad that other kids made fun of them for doing it and in high school they had to clean their desks after every class because everyone was grossed out about it. Some teachers at least were more forgivign and would wait until they left the classroom to clean the desks so that they wouldn't be embarrassed. In high school we had Phsycology together and did a project about ourselves and I remember them both saying that they wished that their parents would have stopped it when they were young.
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CheekyChick 10:09 AM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa:
Woah, maybe I completely misread the OP but I didn't get anywhere in there that the provider is making the child feel ashamed or that she is "grabbing toys" away from the child.
It's the overall tone of the post that makes me feel this DCP has a HUGE problem with this child.

1. GROSS!!

2. GRRRR!!

3. I have removed toys from child

4. Now I have to wash it

5. constantly say no thumb and remove it from child mouth

6. Removed child from area and sat in a chair saying you can't play with my toys if you put them in your mouth

7. This is irritating me to no end!

8. It is so gross

9. It is really bugging me

To me, this says the DCP is irritated with this child to the point where everything he/she does is annoying her. If the problem is not rectified, I feel it's in the child's best interest to term.
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nannyde 10:48 AM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
It sounds to me you are making this child feel ashamed of their behavior which is only going to make the child feel more insecure which will only cause more thumb sucking for comfort.

Have you told the child's parents that you grab toys away, tell him/her they can't play with your toys, and make him/her sit in a different area of the room? I doubt they would be happy with that.

It seems this child is driving you nuts. I would term the child because it would clearly be in his/her best interest.
Hmmmmm

I think she's coming here to get help because she has a very fixated kid who is adding liquid to things that should remain dry. The liquid is his spit which has an ick factor considering it's one of the biggest ways to transmit germs.

It would be WAY easier for her if he would go play toys and quit sucking, creating, and playing spit. He can't lick her belongings, the other children, and play spit in her home. He NEEDS consequences for doing this. If that involves removing him from the other kids and giving him only washable cloth to suck and spit on... then so be it.

I would suggest she put him in a mitted sweatshirt so that she can block off the thumbs and give him WASHABLE cloth to suck on. If he persists with licking and playing spit then he needs to be separated from the other kids and her belongings. He needs TIME where there is ZERO gratification for sucking, spitting, and licking. The only way to do that is block the sucking and make his world really small. Give him small success and then gradually reintroduce him to the play of the other kids.
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MarinaVanessa 11:19 AM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
If the problem is not rectified, I feel it's in the child's best interest to term.
There are many things DCK's do that irritate me but I don't show it to the children. It's part of my job. I don't feel like me being irritated at something that a child does effects a child unless I show that irritation. I read the post and the OP said things that showed she was frustrated but when I read the parts that explain what she is doing with the child I didn't read anything that shows for certain that the OP was showing frustration towards the child and I don't want to jump to any conclusions.

I mean I totally get what your point is however everything she said could have a different meaning to that in which you are assuming and many of those she could not even be directing to the child itself. For example:

1. GROSS!!:
I feel the same way about it when an older child purposely drools or spits onto my floor or gets it on my toys (It is normal for infants only) because spit carries germs. The OP never said that she tells the child that it is gross.

2. GRRRR!!:
The OP sharing that she's angry or upset about the issue but again never really says that she says this to the child. She is sharing how it akes her feel to us.

3. I have removed toys from child:
So have I, I have to remove toys with saliva on them to prevent the spread of germs. It's impossible to know whether the OP "grabs" toys away from the child unless she says she does. She says she removes them. When I remove a mouthed toy I may say something like "We don't put toys in our mouth sweeitie, only the babies. Now we have to put it in the basket and wash our hands". It's never mean or annoyed.

4. Now I have to wash it:
Without knowing the context or tone of voice that is being used we can only assume. I have probably used these exact words too but it was never negative or derogotory.

5. constantly say no thumb and remove it from child mouth:
I don't do either of these as I don't agree with this however again we don't know the tone of voice that is being used.

6. Removed child from area and sat in a chair saying you can't play with my toys if you put them in your mouth.
I do not use time out in these situations but I have removed a child from the area if a child keeps putting things in their mouth. For me this means removing a child from a center and redirecting the child to a different activity. Maybe that's why I don't find anything offensive with removing a child, because I applied it to the way that I do things?? I also tell children not to put toys in their mouths, again not in a demeaning or upset tone.

7. This is irritating me to no end!
It irritates me too. Lot's of things irritate me about DC. Like some DC parents for example, but it doesn't mean that they'll ever know it or that I'll show my irritation to them. This goes for the children too. As long as I don't show my frustration I am not a risk to a child. As far as this goes, my clients always think that I'm a happy clam

8. It is so gross
See #1

9. It is really bugging me
Same thing as #1 and #2

I'm not solely being argumentative here I'm just saying that we don't know whether the OP is being mean to the child or not. There just isn't enough information for me to come to that conclusion. All of your points are good points if it was certain that the child was being demeaned or belittled but I personally don't see how I could be sure of that based only on what was in the OP and until I am sure I don't want to pass judgment on anyone. I see too much of that here on the forum.

Originally Posted by :
To me, this says the DCP is irritated with this child to the point where everything he/she does is annoying her.
No, not everything. Only that the child sucks it's thumb, mouths toys and sometimes puts the mouthed toys in the other kids mouths which is what she was posting about. These can all pretty much be grouped in the same category anyway. And when you read my posts I hope that you don't read a mean tone or anything because that is not at all how I am intending it. I really and honestly did not get a "mean" vibe from the OP and I truly and honestly cannot come to the conclusion that she is treating the child badly solely from the OP. We will just agree to disagree
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nannyde 12:38 PM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
It's the overall tone of the post that makes me feel this DCP has a HUGE problem with this child.

1. GROSS!!

2. GRRRR!!

3. I have removed toys from child

4. Now I have to wash it

5. constantly say no thumb and remove it from child mouth

6. Removed child from area and sat in a chair saying you can't play with my toys if you put them in your mouth

7. This is irritating me to no end!

8. It is so gross

9. It is really bugging me

To me, this says the DCP is irritated with this child to the point where everything he/she does is annoying her. If the problem is not rectified, I feel it's in the child's best interest to term.
I applaud that you care about the kid in this and you do give out a good warning shot that we need to really be aware of how a kids behavior can affect us and the way we feel about the relationship AND the care of the other kids.

She has a kid there who isn't "doing" child care. He's fixating on sucking, licking, and spitting. NONE of these behaviors have anything to do with why he is there everyday.

What he IS there to do is be a part of the group and play toys. His oral fixation is affecting that. He can't play or even eat because of his fixation. This means that she has to manage it CONSTANTLY and it's not pleasant. She's grossed out, she's tired of having to devote SO much of the resources to his fixation, and she is worried about the health of everyone and her belongings.

He's still young enough to give him a chance to learn how to play and self entertain without constant self soothing. It's gotten so out of hand that it is obviously interfering with his development. If it's allowed to continue it will likely escalate. He has a very high chance of seeking even higher levels of self stimulation and soothing.

The behavior (ALL OF IT) needs to be blocked, redirected, and expectations WITH consequences need to be put in place. If the provider is creating a loving, fun, supervised environment then the child has no need to self soothe in it. He needs a CHANCE to get a load of the real life there.. the other kids.. the meals.... the playing. If he won't do it on his own then she needs to interfere in the self stimulation so that he doesn't take up all the adult, ruin property, and put the health of everyone at risk.
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SilverSabre25 12:45 PM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by nannyde:
I applaud that you care about the kid in this and you do give out a good warning shot that we need to really be aware of how a kids behavior can affect us and the way we feel about the relationship AND the care of the other kids.

She has a kid there who isn't "doing" child care. He's fixating on sucking, licking, and spitting. NONE of these behaviors have anything to do with why he is there everyday.

What he IS there to do is be a part of the group and play toys. His oral fixation is affecting that. He can't play or even eat because of his fixation. This means that she has to manage it CONSTANTLY and it's not pleasant. She's grossed out, she's tired of having to devote SO much of the resources to his fixation, and she is worried about the health of everyone and her belongings.

He's still young enough to give him a chance to learn how to play and self entertain without constant self soothing. It's gotten so out of hand that it is obviously interfering with his development. If it's allowed to continue it will likely escalate. He has a very high chance of seeking even higher levels of self stimulation and soothing.

The behavior (ALL OF IT) needs to be blocked, redirected, and expectations WITH consequences need to be put in place. If the provider is creating a loving, fun, supervised environment then the child has no need to self soothe in it. He needs a CHANCE to get a load of the real life there.. the other kids.. the meals.... the playing. If he won't do it on his own then she needs to interfere in the self stimulation so that he doesn't take up all the adult, ruin property, and put the health of everyone at risk.
This is a great post...but on one hand I also agree with CheekyChick. I had a little boy last winter/spring who got progressively more attached to his lovey (a blanket) to the point where he did absolutely NOTHING all day long but cling to that blanket. NOTHING--he wouldn't eat, play, nothing. His mom and I were working together to try and fix it but nothing worked. If that blanket left his hands he was hysterical. He was also hysterical if I stepped more than a few feet away from him. It was extremely stressful for me, for him, and for the other kids and nothing I did helped.

He left when his mom went on maternity leave...he was supposed to come back at the end of the summer but I had decided not to accept him back into care because I no longer wanted to deal with the situation. His mom never contacted me though (I think she did the math on working two days a week and paying daycare for two kids).
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CheekyChick 12:59 PM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa:
There are many things DCK's do that irritate me but I don't show it to the children. It's part of my job. I don't feel like me being irritated at something that a child does effects a child unless I show that irritation. I read the post and the OP said things that showed she was frustrated but when I read the parts that explain what she is doing with the child I didn't read anything that shows for certain that the OP was showing frustration towards the child and I don't want to jump to any conclusions.

On the other hand, we don't know that she isn't showing her frustration to the child. From past experience, when a provider is fixiated on a certain behavior that is irritating to them, it is highly likely that the child feels their frustration.

I'm not solely being argumentative here I'm just saying that we don't know whether the OP is being mean to the child or not. There just isn't enough information for me to come to that conclusion. All of your points are good points if it was certain that the child was being demeaned or belittled but I personally don't see how I could be sure of that based only on what was in the OP and until I am sure I don't want to pass judgment on anyone. I see too much of that here on the forum.

You're right. Mabey I'm passing a bit of judgement and that's wrong. I just tend to feel sorry for ANY child if I feel there's a chance they are being mistreated.

No, not everything. Only that the child sucks it's thumb, mouths toys and sometimes puts the mouthed toys in the other kids mouths which is what she was posting about. These can all pretty much be grouped in the same category anyway. And when you read my posts I hope that you don't read a mean tone or anything because that is not at all how I am intending it. I really and honestly did not get a "mean" vibe from the OP and I truly and honestly cannot come to the conclusion that she is treating the child badly solely from the OP. We will just agree to disagree
Again, we don't know if the child is being treated badly or not. I was only putting in my two cents that IF the problem cannot be rectified, she should term the child instead of letting her frustration grow. That is not good for her or the child.
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CheekyChick 01:26 PM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by nannyde:
I applaud that you care about the kid in this and you do give out a good warning shot that we need to really be aware of how a kids behavior can affect us and the way we feel about the relationship AND the care of the other kids.

She has a kid there who isn't "doing" child care. He's fixating on sucking, licking, and spitting. NONE of these behaviors have anything to do with why he is there everyday.

What he IS there to do is be a part of the group and play toys. His oral fixation is affecting that. He can't play or even eat because of his fixation. This means that she has to manage it CONSTANTLY and it's not pleasant. She's grossed out, she's tired of having to devote SO much of the resources to his fixation, and she is worried about the health of everyone and her belongings.

He's still young enough to give him a chance to learn how to play and self entertain without constant self soothing. It's gotten so out of hand that it is obviously interfering with his development. If it's allowed to continue it will likely escalate. He has a very high chance of seeking even higher levels of self stimulation and soothing.

The behavior (ALL OF IT) needs to be blocked, redirected, and expectations WITH consequences need to be put in place. If the provider is creating a loving, fun, supervised environment then the child has no need to self soothe in it. He needs a CHANCE to get a load of the real life there.. the other kids.. the meals.... the playing. If he won't do it on his own then she needs to interfere in the self stimulation so that he doesn't take up all the adult, ruin property, and put the health of everyone at risk.
I hope that she can take your advice (and the advice of everyone who gave their input) and that it works out well.
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nannyde 03:12 PM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by SilverSabre25:
I had a little boy last winter/spring who got progressively more attached to his lovey (a blanket) to the point where he did absolutely NOTHING all day long but cling to that blanket. NOTHING--he wouldn't eat, play, nothing. His mom and I were working together to try and fix it but nothing worked. If that blanket left his hands he was hysterical. He was also hysterical if I stepped more than a few feet away from him. It was extremely stressful for me, for him, and for the other kids and nothing I did helped.
Did you guys consider just throwing it in the garbage and insisting that he go play?

I always wonder if in these situations if the adults just said NO MORE and didn't try to work on it or wean the kid off of it........... just STOPPED allowing the fixation at all... if the kid would then be able to "receive" the world without something blocking him from going into it.

By the time they get themselves so worked up over their minute to minute having self soothing and comfort they are SO unhappy that taking it completely away can only produce the level of unhappiness they are already sitting in.

I think it takes the adults to stop putting energy into it so the kid can release it. It's important to have confidence that the child WILL rally and it's worth it to have them have a week or so of instability to bring the real world into their view. The sum total of a week or so of disrupting their sleep, eating, play etc. is worth it if you come out the other side with a kid that will start living a real kid life.

One important thing to do is to watch for them transferring the attachment onto something else and to monitor them for illness, self harm, repetitive motion consulation, and striking out to whatever adult was the gateway to their fixation. That's usually the mother who has used the comfort item to keep the kid from crying.

When the child inevitably gets sick the temptation to return the item is VERY high. If the parent knows the child WILL become ill before it happens that will help them to prepare to cope with the illness without returning to the fixation item.
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SilverSabre25 03:47 PM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by nannyde:
Did you guys consider just throwing it in the garbage and insisting that he go play?

I always wonder if in these situations if the adults just said NO MORE and didn't try to work on it or wean the kid off of it........... just STOPPED allowing the fixation at all... if the kid would then be able to "receive" the world without something blocking him from going into it.

By the time they get themselves so worked up over their minute to minute having self soothing and comfort they are SO unhappy that taking it completely away can only produce the level of unhappiness they are already sitting in.

I think it takes the adults to stop putting energy into it so the kid can release it. It's important to have confidence that the child WILL rally and it's worth it to have them have a week or so of instability to bring the real world into their view. The sum total of a week or so of disrupting their sleep, eating, play etc. is worth it if you come out the other side with a kid that will start living a real kid life.

One important thing to do is to watch for them transferring the attachment onto something else and to monitor them for illness, self harm, repetitive motion consulation, and striking out to whatever adult was the gateway to their fixation. That's usually the mother who has used the comfort item to keep the kid from crying.

When the child inevitably gets sick the temptation to return the item is VERY high. If the parent knows the child WILL become ill before it happens that will help them to prepare to cope with the illness without returning to the fixation item.
I did try stopping it completely here. I would take it when he walked through the door and put it up, away, out of sight in a closet. It resulted in the worst, most sicenly heart-wrenching screams, for HOURS, ALL DAY. He wouldnt eat, sleep, nothing but scream until he was purple.

He was part-time (all day M, T, and half day W, Th) and only about 15 months, 18 when he left me.

I think, based on some reading I did back then, that he may actually have/had some sort of anxiety disorder, so intense was the reaction to anxious situations (no blankie, me stepping away, putting him behind a gate, etc). My gentle push to dcm to ask his ped about it was not received well so I dropped it. Then dcm told me that he would be leaving while she was on mat. leave and when he came back it would be only two days a week...and I gave up. I just focused on separating him from it long enough to eat and getting through until he left.

I learned two important lessons with him: no part-time babies and no lovies.

It was interesting, how that lovey developed though...last December he was fine, played, ate, slept, was happy...then he went on a two-week vacation at Christmas last year and came back with the "addicition" going full force--he was a different child. Something changed in that two weeks, and I have no idea what.
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MarinaVanessa 04:00 PM 11-27-2011
Originally Posted by nannyde:
Did you guys consider just throwing it in the garbage and insisting that he go play?
We did this with my nephew an his binkies. He was so fixated on his pacifiers that he could not be without them. He didn't even have to have it in his mouth, even just having one in each hand soothed him. Usually he had one in his mouth and carried one or two in his hands. I've never seen anything like it. He was 2.

EVERYONE had to have spare ones at our houses just in case he came over and he lost one. He would scream and cry if he didn't have at least 2. Finally SIL went on a business trip for a weekend and my nephew stayed at our house. We threw the three pacifiers that he came with away on a Friday before my SIL was even 10 minutes on her way to the airport. When she came back on a Sunday night it was like he had never had one. She thought that it would not work but that was because she would give in. In my opinion quitting cold turkey works best.
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Unregistered 09:15 AM 11-28-2011
Thank you all for the replies.

Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
It's the overall tone of the post that makes me feel this DCP has a HUGE problem with this child.
If my original post sounded like I am in any way an uncaring person who should not be caring for children this is so far from who I am. I love my job and I love every single one of "my" kids.

This little boy is missing out on so much because he only wants to suck his thumb and with him doing this it really holding him back from doing so much. It is also making it so that I almost need to hire someone to come in here just to clean toys! I have to limit what he plays with and at 3 years old, to have to play with baby toys is not right and I feel bad. But he just can't play with anything. :-( I want to help him.



Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
1. GROSS!!

First off, I am not making the child feel ashamed and I am not mean! I would never be "mean" to a child. I am telling the child that he is a big boy and that he needs to play toys and not suck his thumb while he is playing. I explain to him that when he sucks his thumb and he touches the toys he gets them all full of spit and that it is not nice for his friends. They are all yucky now and |I need to wash them. So I take the toy away and put it in the wash basin. Yes this is GROSS!!




2.
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
GRRRR!!

Yes it is GRRRRRRR! A really big GRRRRRR because it is very frustrating to constantly be washing and trying to explain and to repeat myself saying "no x please don't suck your thumb it is making the toys all yucky"



3.
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
I have removed toys from child

Yes I do remove the toys from the child but I don't GRAB them away as you previously stated! They are full of snot and spit and so I must take them away BEFORE the smaller children put the toys in their mouths and they get to ingest all of the wonderful goodies he has deposited onto these toys. My other littles who play in this area are 15 months to 23 months old and do not know better. They still mouth toys. I had this boy in the preschool section with 2 other children but because of this habit I moved him back to the toddler side where the toys are washable.


4.
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
Now I have to wash it

Oh Yes! Now I do have to wash it don't I? I take the toy away and say, you don't put my toys in your mouth, I have to wash it now.



5.
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
constantly say no thumb and remove it from child mouth

Yes again, I constantly say no thumb and if he won't take it out I will go over and take his little thumb out of his mouth and say no thumb! I can say 1000 times a day, "Please little Billy you are a big boy, you don't suck your thumb because it makes the toys all yucky and then your friends will play with them and it is not nice. This is time consuming and I am now just saying NO THUMB!



6.
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
Removed child from area and sat in a chair saying you can't play with my toys if you put them in your mouth

Yes I have taken him away from the toy area after taking 10 or so pieces away so that I don't have 2 hours worth of extra work at the end of the day washing a whole toy box full of toys. I do say that you can not play with my toys right now because they are not for putting in your mouth. He is 3!! I had him in the preschool section for a while but had to move him back because of this.



7.
Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
This is irritating me to no end!

Yes this is irritating me to no end. It is like I said above. It is gross and it is very time consuming. Also today I have 3 of my toddlers out sick plus this little guy! This boy has been sick since last Thursday and now 1/2 of my kids are out sick with the flu (same thing he has) All now have a fever.


Originally Posted by CheekyChick:
To me, this says the DCP is irritated with this child to the point where everything he/she does is annoying her. If the problem is not rectified, I feel it's in the child's best interest to term.

I am irritated with the child's habit of constantly sucking his thumb and slobbering all over everything! I am irritated at the fact that at the end of the day, I have at least 45 minutes cleaning the toys that he has played with! I am NOT irritated at everything he does. He really is the sweetest little thing. He is gentle and loving with myself and all of our friends. He is polite and a happy, good natured little boy. He has been completely toilet trained for almost a year accident free. There are so many wonderful things that I love about this child and I love who he is as a little person. It is the thumb habit that I do not like NOT the child! I do not like that he does not know how to play because of his fixation to his thumb. I do not like that I have to clean everything he touches every single day. I do not like that this is possibly making my other children sick.

I am not sure that it is in the child's best interest for me to term him, however it may be in the best interest of all of my other children's health to term him if I can not get this to stop. :-(

I do not want to term as I really care for him and I have put forth a LOT of time and effort into trying to help him stop this nasty habit. And I have never been "mean" to him in any way. I came here hoping for some ideas maybe that I have not thought of trying.
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Unregistered 10:02 AM 11-28-2011
How to stop thumb sucking in a fun, positive and memorable way: If you want your child to stop thumb sucking, consider making it fun, positive and enjoyable. It is hard for kids to give up thumb sucking because it is so comforting and they probably have been doing it since they were babies. Rather than replace their thumb sucking with a plastic thumbguard or bitter thumb sucking remedy such as bitter polish that kids despise, Get a Thumbuddy! Remember to never shame a child into stopping thumb sucking…It will only make them want to suck more! Introduce Thumbuddy To Love® to your child and they will want to break the habit. They will learn that growing up can be fun like the heroes in the Thumbuddy To Love™ books and by taking their matching thumb puppets everywhere including to bed. The fun sticker charts remind themselves that they can give up thumb sucking easily. Thumbsuckers love Thumbuddy to Love®! you can google it...
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CheekyChick 04:18 PM 11-28-2011
Originally Posted by Unregistered:
Thank you all for the replies.



If my original post sounded like I am in any way an uncaring person who should not be caring for children this is so far from who I am. I love my job and I love every single one of "my" kids.

This little boy is missing out on so much because he only wants to suck his thumb and with him doing this it really holding him back from doing so much. It is also making it so that I almost need to hire someone to come in here just to clean toys! I have to limit what he plays with and at 3 years old, to have to play with baby toys is not right and I feel bad. But he just can't play with anything. :-( I want to help him.

I am so happy to hear this. I envisioned this poor little child being mistreated because you were at your wits end. I'm thrilled to know you love him.

One last thing... I have a couple of thumb-suckers and it never entered my mind to try to stop them from doing so. If we are strictly talking the saliva factor involved with thumb sucking, my non thumb-suckers sneeze and cough in each others faces (and mine too), drool, put toys in their mouths (even the older ones at times), stick their fingers in their mouths, and drink out of each others sippy cups. Oh, I even have two 3 year old nose pickers.

Just because your thumb-sucker might "donate" a bit more saliva then the rest, doesn't mean your other children are germ-free little angels. I'm certain they do their fair share of germ swapping as well.
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Hunni Bee 06:04 PM 11-28-2011
Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa:
We did this with my nephew an his binkies. He was so fixated on his pacifiers that he could not be without them. He didn't even have to have it in his mouth, even just having one in each hand soothed him. Usually he had one in his mouth and carried one or two in his hands. I've never seen anything like it. He was 2.

EVERYONE had to have spare ones at our houses just in case he came over and he lost one. He would scream and cry if he didn't have at least 2. Finally SIL went on a business trip for a weekend and my nephew stayed at our house. We threw the three pacifiers that he came with away on a Friday before my SIL was even 10 minutes on her way to the airport. When she came back on a Sunday night it was like he had never had one. She thought that it would not work but that was because she would give in. In my opinion quitting cold turkey works best.
We did this for my nephew who turned 2 on Friday. We were starting to worry because he seemed to be "losing" his speech - words that he seemed to have already mastered were disappearing from his vocabulary or we could no longer understand them. His speech was so garbled it sounded like he had the paci in even when he didn't. His behavior was getting really bad because he couldn't communicate...

So his mom one day a couple weeks ago, threw all of them in garbage. He had one hallelujah fit when we said they were all gone and he couldn't find one...but after that he forgot about it and is having a language explosion.
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Tags:3 year old, bad behavior, germs, spitting, sucking thumb
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