Eli has developed a new habit of putting his fingers in my mouth and pulling my lip for comfort whenever he is tired, sad or hurt. He puts his face into my neck and holds me tight with his one arm around my neck while the other hand goes straight into my mouth pulling on my lip. I decided to do a little research on this and I found out that it is quite a common habit called twiddling.
The definition of twiddling is to move something repeatedly between your fingers , especially without any purpose.
Babies use this for comfort. Some babies pinch their moms nipples repeatedly while breastfeeding and a lot seem to pull their moms lips for comfort or put their fingers in their moms mouth. Most babies twiddle while breastfeeding but afew continue after weaning.
Psychological reasons for twiddling;
Twiddling produces Oxytocin in your baby which is a stress reducing hormone, this helps calm your baby and also helps him to bond with you.
Physical reasons for twiddling;
Twiddling keeps your babies hands busy and keeps him focused on a task. With being focused it also helps calm their mind and stay on task.
It can be cute at first but can also be difficult for moms especially when out and about. I learnt that the best way to deal with it , is to try and replace it with something. So as soon as your baby starts to twiddle try and replace your lip with a nice baby comfort blanket or soft cute toy.