One of my twin boys is a shirt chewer. Actually, he was a shirt chewer. I made chew necklaces for him to wear and completely cured him of his nervous habit of chewing on his clothing in about two months. I am not crafty and I can not sew at all. So when I looked for ideas about how to get kids to stop chewing their clothes, I was disappointed to find complicated, messy sensory games or options that required a sewing machine.
Finally, I found an easy, free, no sew option by whining to my friend who is a school teacher. She had seen a few students wear “chew necklaces” in her elementary school.
How to make chew necklaces for kids who chew their clothes:
*old tshirts (that your child has outgrown or already chewed holes in)
*regular bedroom dresser
*ability to braid
*Cut out three strips of fabric (~25-30 inches long, depending on how long you want the necklace to be. Remember tshirt material stretches) from the old tshirts.
*Tie the three strips together into a knot at one end.
*Braid the three strips.
*Tie the end of the braid into a knot.
*Tie the two knots together.
Because they are made out of tshirt material, they feel the same to kids as chewing on their clothes and are likely to be a great substitute. They can also be thrown in the wash with their clothes. They do eventually get chewed through (as evidenced in the above picture; the gray and red one is pretty much done) but it’s easy to make more. And oddly, the best news is that after wearing these for a few months, my son just quit chewing altogether. Now, we don’t need these necklaces and he doesn’t chew on his shirts anymore!