Infants and young children may suck their fingers, pacifiers and other objects as a relaxing and comforting tool. Usually the habit stops between the ages of two and four. The intensity, duration and frequency may determine the effects on oral structures and tooth alignment.
Children usually suck their fingers, pacifier or other objects when they feel insecure, tired, bored or before they fall sleep. These habits are difficult to eliminate. It is recommended that parents concentrate on correcting the cause, instead of the habit; provide comfort and a sense of security, praise and reward your child when he/she is not performing it. If these tactics don’t work, Dr. Garzon may recommend an appliance to help discourage and correct the habit.