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OT Corner: Biters, Chewers, Suckers and Pickers

Editor’s Note:  Special Thanks to our friends at Sensory Spectrum for reminding us of this great article by Lindsey Biel 
Dear Sensory Smarts,
My lovely 8-year-old daughter likes to bite and suck on the strangest things–pencils, toys, dress hems, books or whatever. She recently began to chew on her !ngernails and cuticles until they are red and raw. I try telling her to stop but she can’t seem to help herself. Any suggestions? From, Mother of Mouthy Girl
Dear Mom, Humans are oral creatures. Babies !rst explore toys, !ngers, and other objects with their mouths. “en they start to use their eyes, hands, and other body parts to check out their world. We all continue to self-soothe orally to some degree throughout the lifespan, but usually in socially acceptable ways such as chewing gum, snacking even when we’re not hungry, and so on. A signi!cant number of children with sensory processing challenges engage in mouthing beyond the age people typically stop doing so. Before considering whether this is due to a sensory processing issue, it’s essential to address any physical o
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