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concernedmama , 21 Feb 2011

Child Finger-Picking: Any suggestions?

My 3rd grade son has been finger-picking since he was a toddler, but his teacher is concerned that it's becoming a distraction in class. He's taking Concerta 18mg for ADHD and I know OCD tendencies often accompany ADHD. Any suggestions on how to help him STOP? Many thanks for any helpful advice!
1 Answer
February 23, 2011
Hi! Not sure what to suggest but I think with children the only thing to do is to put barriers between them and their picking - so cover his hands when he sleeps, explain why it is bad but every time you do that let him know how much you love him! I say that because I know how hard it is to have listened to my family telling me 'stop picking' the whole time and feeling like I'm being judged or they don't understand. You could try putting plasters on his fingers and giving him some sort of a toy to play with as a replacement activity. Also reward him if he manages to spend time not picking or if he manages to keep the plasters on his finger for an agreeg amount of tie. For example you could start by putting the plasters on for one hour the teo then three then a whole day or however long it takes for him to learn to stop. Be patient - it might take a long time! You only need to put the plasters on the fingers he uses to pick (finger and thumb) because they are mainly there to stop him picking rather than to help his fingers to heal. Think of some really good treats he can have on good days. Don't punnish him or make him feel bad about it!!! I hope that helps and best of luck.

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