How to Help Children get Rid of Bad Habits

Dr. Purushothaman
January 12, 2014


There is a saying that “signature and character never change”. But this sometime proves to be wrong if we work hard to rectify ourselves. The purpose of education is not only to teach us how to read and write, but to mold our characters and make us potent enough so that we can fight with any and every situation in life. In the formative years of our life, we are taught many important life skills that are essential to live a good life. But even these teachings sometime fail and children develop many bad habits. There can be diverse reasons for a child to develop such habits. We often notice kids sucking their thumb or picking their nose. They do it unconsciously or in fact not knowing that it is a bad habit. But if these are not stopped at an early age, these habits can continue up to the adult age and thus can impact the social and personal life of the child. Thus it is very important to help the child to get rid of such habits.
Following are some of the ways how to make your child get rid of bad habits in an early age:-
1-Finger or Thumb Sucking- This habit mostly develops during the infancy period. It gives a feeling of relaxation to the children and also helps them in sleeping easily. But if your child is still continuing with that habit, you should intervene the matter. This habit can cause problems when permanent teeth start to grow. To stop such habit in an early age, provide your child with something to chew. In our childhood days, our moms used to provide us a wood stick with a round top to chew
2-Teeth Grinding- Teeth grinding is a habit that over half of all infants develop. Most of the kids do this kind of grinding while they are sleeping. Before the growth of the permanent tooth, this habit can be seen in almost every child. After the development of permanent teeth, this habit gradually vanishes. But if it continues, it can cause jaw problems to the kids. Thus in such cases, it is better to consult a dentist who can fit a night guard to protect their teeth while sleeping
3-Nose Picking- It is one of the most common bad habits that we can notice even among adults also. It is a disgusting habit that can disgust the person who is talking to you or is listening to you. People may do it unconsciously, but it can irritate the person opposite to you. Thus while you notice your child picking the nose, immediately provide the child with a tissue paper. Put a little petroleum jelly in your child's nostrils. This will help relieve irritation. Saline spray may also help, especially for children with asthma
4-Nail Biting- It becomes more serious if your child's nail biting causes infection of the nail or bleeding. Positive reinforcement is the best way to counteract nail biting. Talk about what your child is doing with their hands when they are not nail biting. This will help them realize how much more they can do when their fingernails are not in their mouths. Often a child will stop biting their nails
Try not to be embarrassed by your children. Most children do at least one, if not two of the habits mentioned on a regular basis. It doesn't mean you're a bad parent.

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