(HealthDay News) -- Usually, your child will give up sucking on a thumb with time. But if the practice seems to go on too long, you can take steps to encourage your child to stop thumb-sucking.
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The American Academy of Pediatrics offers these suggestions:
- Don't tease, punish or speak harshly to your child for sucking the thumb.
- When your child isn't sucking the thumb, offer words of praise and rewards.
- Find ways to entertain and distract your child if thumb sucking is a way to battle boredom.
- Speak with your child's pediatrician or dentist about using a device in the mouth to make thumb sucking uncomfortable.
-- Diana Kohnle
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