Friday, April 13, 2012

The thumb stops here!

Let me just start off by saying, I LOVE thumb suckers. They m.e.l.t. my heart! And I have been blessed with 2 precious ones, who oddly enough, suck their thumbs (haha, I just wrote "sumbs"...that's how Audrey says it!) the EXACT same way. Same hand, lovey held the same way, etc. And I love it all!

Except for the resulting orthodontic problems...gappy, buck teeth, deformed hard palate, tongue thrusting, etc. And this is just what I see w/ my untrained eye! So, as much as I love those little thumb suckers, the time has come. Blaine wanted "the time" to come a while back, but Momma wasn't ready. Recently, I've come around a bit. I even asked the pediatrician at Wyatt's 1 yr checkup what he thought about banning the thumb from Wyatt too! After all, it's pretty hard to quit smoking when your family is still lighting up. ;) He said go for it! So we are...

The most common recommendation I've received was for Mavala Stop. Some Swedish brand, that according to all online reviews, personal friends, pediatric dentists, and dental hygienist-friend works the best! It's just some yucky tasting stuff you paint on the nail. Ok, so I finally got around to ordering it on Amazon for ~$12 about a week ago. Delivery date was supposed to be April 17, so I knew I had a few days to get myself prepared (I was nervous!!). When the stuff arrived on April 10th!!, I freaked out, called a few people for support, and decided to jump in. All or nothing, no more thumb sucking!

I painted both thumbs before nap on Wed. Wyatt tasted it, make a yucky face, a spit-it-out sound, tossed around a minute, then went to sleep. He fussed a bit about every hour, which I think was likely when he used to grab his thumb and roll back to sleep. Other than that, he took a pretty decent nap. Audrey had a mini-meltdown b/f nap, just with the THOUGHT of not being able to suck her thumb! She hadn't even tasted it; I just told her she was a big girl and couldn't suck it any more. When I finally told her she could taste it, she did, and freaked out some more, but then eventually went to sleep. So far-success!

Bedtime. I'm still a little nervous. But we paint their thumbs again, and off we go. I think they were both so tired from fitful naps, that they didn't really complain at bedtime! Wyatt did yucky-face-spit-it-out-noise again, but that was that. Audrey tried to tell Daddy what a big girl she was, then cried some big tears, then went to sleep.

Morning. Looking for a real verdict! Wyatt's thumb was wet and wrinkly. That crazy kid, sucked his thumb all night long in spite of the nastiness!! That's dedication. (And let me tell you, this stuff is NASTY. I was blowing on his thumb to dry it at bedtime and accidentally got some on my lip. Ruined the rest of my evening, including my kids-are-asleep-where's-the-candy-snack.) We tried it again for both naps on Thursday, but he apparently didn't care. He sucked it right off. Final verdict for Wyatt: try again in ~6 mos. We know he's still young, but it was worth a shot!

Audrey, on Thursday morning, woke up singing and clapping "If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. Clap clap!" (Which she has deemed a pink song??) I guess she slept well! Her thumb was dry, and she said she didn't suck it! (cautiously...) Victory! We have continued painting her thumb at bedtime and naptime, this only being the 3rd day, but she hasn't sucked her thumb since we started. The only current struggle is how long it takes her to go to sleep, since she's had to change her routine. I'm sure that will settle out soon enough.

So once again, I'm surprised and impressed (and not just a little saddened!) by my sweet Audrey, at how she seamlessly moves from babyhood to big kid status. At least I have a little more time with one thumb sucker baby... ;)

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