03 February 2010

I didn't knock on wood.

I had to brag on Liam just the other week and comment about how he no longer bites himself. He had only done it a few times before and it was always his arm, wrist or thumb because he would place them in his mouth while on the floor and then bite as he explored his body. Then the bites would turn into the tonic bite reflex and he would clamp down and not release. It is an abnormal jaw reflex:

Tonic bite reflex - This is jaw closure accomplished by forceful, sustained upward movement of the mandible. It occurs following stimulation of the teeth or gums. It is accompanied by increased abnormal tone in the jaw muscles. It is difficult to release. Damage to the teeth or to the object placed in the mouth may occur. The tonic bite increases if the item is pulled on. Do not confuse this pattern with a bite reflex which results in closing or approximation of closing following stimulation to the lips, gums or teeth. This normal reflex becomes integrated before age two, and is not associated with abnormally increased muscle tone.

Well, after speaking into the universe the fact that he didn't ever do that anymore, he decided to one up me and do it not once, but THREE times in the last week. And all of them on the same thumb!

Liam's a righty and he is always playing and exploring with his right hand now. He brings it to his face, puts the fingers in his mouth and will suck and munch away. But this past week he decided to further the cause of cannibalism and try to take off his own thumb.

The first two times he broke the skin and all was okay after a short while. But this third time has done his sweet little phalange in. I truly think he might lose his fingernail.

Yesterday as I was making dinner, he was contentedly laying on the floor. After a short time of my absence, Rylie screamed for me and I came running into the living room to see Liam clamped down on his own thumb. When he let go the nail was white and he had broken the skin at the nail bed in two spots. He then cried non stop for a half an hour. Normally, he is over the bites in no time at all. I knew this one was bad.

Fast forward to this morning.

Liam spit up just a bit and I was wiping off his hand and cleaning it up when he started to whimper and complain. I didn't think anything of his finger and when it hit me that cleaning his hand was hurting him, I turned his thumb over and saw this:

You can see the bite marks down on the base of his thumb from a few days ago. All the marks on the nail are from yesterday along with the subsequent discoloration of the nail. And it is hard to tell in this photo but his right thumb is twice the size of his left thumb.

Poor guy.

Why is that when you mention something not happening anymore, it then happens? I guess I should have knocked on wood? Isn't that what you are supposed to do to keep a good thing going?

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