Teen Sucking (A Comprehensive Guide)

Teen Sucking

Sucking thumb is absolutely a natural tendency found in children and babies. Most babies come out of this habit at the age of five and some people do not come out of it. When a person enters his teenage and still sucking his thumb this known as teen sucking. A person might not have observed a teen sucking his thumb the reason behind this is that most of the teen sucking their thumbs do not usually do it publically because they get afraid that people might laugh at them or they might be called as weirdos. Few of the professionals argue that teen sucking is fairly common with nearly 10 teens sucking their thumb keep it secret for their own comfort. In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

Teen Sucking (A Comprehensive Guide)

The habit of a teen sucking their thumbs is usually termed to begin in the uterus before a person comes into this world. This is known a sigh of relief that relates to the endorphin rush babies get during breastfeeding and mostly found in babies coping with their slight anxiety. This is also true in the case of a teen sucking their thumbs. As, teens are not on breastfeeding anymore, to suck their thumbs becomes a productive method for them to deal with their anxiety or to get comfortable and relaxed in bedtime. Some people depend on their thumbs to calm themselves as long as they can remember and thus teen sucking has developed to be a habitual thing the normal lives of the teen. 

Mostly teen sucking their thumbs will be doing it consistently if they can but their terror of getting judgmental thoughts or misperceived by the people remains higher. These people will try to control their habit publically but when they will get to their comfort zones such as, homes or their cars they will start sucking their thumb by wrapping their fingers around the bridge of their nose for support and will be enjoying their routine of thumb sucking. In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

Several, if not almost all, babies will show thumbs, fingers, or toes sucking behavior. In some instances, this might occur as earlier as within hours of birth or quicker. Some babies are shown in ultrasound pictures sucking their thumbs while in utero.

As you can see, thumb sucking is fairly mutual between children, babies, and even younger (pre-school aged) teenagers. Several children who suck their thumb and finger halt doing so without any form of involvement earlier they touch the school phase. Others, who may not be as motivated to leave on their own, usually answer back to slight forms of interference from blood relations and ancestors.

Teen Sucking

There are not any precise information which exists representing that the rate with which thumb sucking stays outside juvenile into the teenage and grownup ages. Though there is subjective evidence, and this evidence suggests that there are several grown-ups who suck their thumb. These numbers could be as high as one in ten adults. Again, most children who suck their thumbs throughout early stages and the earlier juvenile will stop on their own, but there is a ratio of those kids who will carry on to do so (usually in isolated) for years. Still, for others, thumb sucking may show to be a pattern that continues through their whole survival. In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

Causes of Teen Sucking

Those teenagers who have a habit of sucking their thumbs can come to know that it lessens their anxiousness and strain and giving them help to get comfortable. There is a possibility that teen sucking their thumbs may have gone through some traumatic experience in their earlier life as a child and thus developed the habit of thumb sucking to be comfortable during the times of anxiousness. On some occasions, this habit can stick, being an easier way to relieve the stress. The habit of thumb sucking can become spontaneous in order to relieve the stress as well as boredom. There is subjective evidence that indicates that those individuals who have trichotillomania which is state assigned a tempting desire to pull out scalp, eyebrows, or hair of body also have a habit of sucking their thumb. The deterioration of the age is a state in which an individual shows behavior more distinctive as compared to those individuals who are not elder than them. The habit of thumb sucking is usually linked with this situation. In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

Thumb Sucking Effects

There are no such negative effects of sucking thumb among children with the baby tooth. Nevertheless, when their permanent tooth will be grown up this habit can originate issues with the alignment of teeth. Among teen sucking their thumb the issues of oral health might get worst with bite until or unless they are given due care either by putting braces or entirely leaving this habit. The disadvantages of sucking thumb can get worst if a person continues sucking his thumb more often or robustly. The habit of a teen sucking their thumbs can give rise to many other disadvantages: In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

Teen Sucking (A Comprehensive Guide)

Misaligned teeth (dental malocclusion)

The habit of sucking thumb can cause many issues with an appropriate teeth alignment which may give rise to a state of overbite condition. Both the lower and the upper teeth might start to incline towards outside. This can be termed as an anterior open bite. In a few instances, the lower fang of teeth might start to tip towards the tongue. The muscles of the cheeks flex during robust thumb sucking. This can cause the shape of the jaw to be altered and give rise to crossbite which is another form of misalignment of teeth. The facial appearances are also likely to get affected from the changes in jaw shape. In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

Changes to the roof of the mouth

Teen sucking their thumb might give rise to the roof of their mouth to dent and shape like concave. The roof of the mouth may also become more sensitive to touch and sensation.

Oral Infection

Sucking the thumb without washing hands properly may cause the dirt and bacteria to get into the mouth which may create problems causing infectious disease in teeth or in the gum.

Problems with the Thumb

The shape of the thumb can also get changed due to vigorously sucking the thumb. It may become thinner or lengthened. It may cause the skin to be dried which will cause cracks and may cause it to bleed or become infectious.  The callouses may also get formed on thumbs due to constant and long term sucking the thumb.

Difficulties with Speech

The difficulties in speech such as lisping might start to occur due to the dental problems caused by thumb sucking.

Are there any benefits?

For some teens sucking their thumbs can get some benefits from their habit. This habit may reduce their stress and can alleviate the symptoms coming out of anxiety. The research has not identified any other benefits related to thumb sucking.

How to stop adult thumb sucking

Few teens sucking their thumbs have reported that they stopped sucking their thumbs after they had made a decision to make it happen and then making sure they stick to their decision. This technique might not be considered for everyone particularly if they have been repeating this behavior for so long and it has become their subconscious habit.

Home remedies

Those who have this habit should try to find the prompts if possible in their lives which triggers them to sucking their thumb. Getting to know the time of the occurrence of this behavior can be helpful to put in place the alternative techniques of relieving stress for example deep breathing, exercise, and meditation. Covering the thumb with a cloth or foul testing a substance can be helpful strategies to curb this habit.  One may also try keeping his hands busy with some kind of toys or having a stress ball in hand can also be helpful to lessen the urges. Other gears to try to take in popping a mint or stick of gum into your mouth when you feel the desire to suck your thumb.

Teen Sucking (A Comprehensive Guide)

Behavioral therapy

Seeking help from a mental health expert will also give a person some coping methods and tools. The application of behavioral therapy has also been considered an effective method to discourage negative habits. In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

The takeaway

No specific data has been on the record related to the teen sucking their thumb but can be found commonly more than one can realize. Similar to the childhood thumb sucking habit, teen sucking can also get worse and may create issues with speech and biting. If an individual is really thinking to get rid of the issue of sucking his thumb he may get in touch with his doctor. The doctor can provide him with additional recommendations which might help him in getting rid of thumb sucking.

Teen Sucking (A Comprehensive Guide)

FAQs about teen sucking

Q1. Is thumb sucking bad?

The habit of sucking thumb is a response from the subconscious or a child may develop this habit due to his or her boredom. When the babies are growing up and they do not have teeth there are no adverse effects of thumb sucking. But when a child grows up enters into his teen ages he must avoid this habit as his tooth alignment and his speech might be at risk. The child should be encouraged not to use this habit instead he must find a comfortable one.  In this article, we will discuss teen sucking. 

Q2. Why do people suck their thumb?

The causes of the people sucking their thumbs are that their habit of thumb sucking has been developed to be involuntary and they have been using it to relieve their stress or to get rid of boredom.

Q3. Is thumb sucking hereditary?

The habit of thumb sucking is a childhood body-focused behavior. Around eighty percent of babies suck their thumbs. Maximum babies halt it by themselves among the period of 3 and 6 years. There has been no thumb sucking genetic factor found so far.

Q4. Which is worse thumb or pacifier?

Sucking a concession while napping may lower the danger of the baby of unexpected baby death syndrome. Neither are faultless: Pacifiers can upsurge the danger of earhole contagions, but thumb sucking can add rudiments to the mouth of the baby. Thumbs are lower preservation because children know how to find them in the dim light or no light at all.

References

Spooky (2017): “The silent phenomenon of adult thumb sucking” 

Healthline.com (n.d.): “Why Some Continue to Suck Their Thumbs as Adults”

Flow psychology (n.d): “Pros and Cons of Adult thumb sucking” 

Teen Sucking (A Comprehensive Guide)

Juanita Agboola

Juanita Agboola is the editor in chief of HFNE and an expert in mental health online. She has been writing about online behaviour, mental health and psychology issues since 2012. All Guides are reviewed by our editorial team which constitutes various clinical psychologists, PhD and PsyD colleagues.