Edda started mouthing her right hand in November of last year. This was just about the time I was becoming fairly certain that she wasn’t your typically developing kid. I remember so clearly thinking, oh, she’s getting her molars, she’s just chewing on her fingers.. Little did I know..
Argh. I hate the mouthing. Well, maybe hate it is too strong a word, I just really dislike it. It’s just a wee bit disgusting. You know, saliva everywhere, everything a bit smelly and then you think of all the germs (although I have to say that Edda is no sicker than the rest of us).
So for the first half of the year, when we weren’t sure if Edda had Rett, I put her arm in the brace because I was totally paranoid that she was losing her ability to use her hand and if I put the brace on her, she could still use her right hand pretty well. Everyday I would look at that hand and see that she was still picking up stuff and moving things around. So I’d say to myself, see? She doesn’t have Rett, she still can use her hand! Ha! Ha! Ha!
Well, I have to say that now it’s finally September and since January, Edda has lost a lot of the use of her right hand even with the extensive bracing and various rubbing/tickling/scratching sensory crap that we’ve been doing to get her to try and remember that she has a right hand – she still likes best to put it in her mouth.
So now we’ve braced the arm so much that it’s losing muscle tone. I’ve given up thinking that she’s going to give up mouthing anytime soon, so we’ve gone back to where we’ve started. To preserve muscle tone, she gets to go braceless again, but everyone at school and at her therapies is reminding her to keep her hand out of her mouth. She knows she’s not suppose to do it and our PT managed to get NO MOUTHING for a whole 45 minute session.
At school today, I saw her go hide in a corner so she could mouth to her hearts content away from the teacher’s eye. She’s a clever one, that Edda.