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Thread: Biting.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Default Biting.

    My lil guy is 6 months old and has been exclusively breast fed from day1 with no real trouble. Now that he has his two bottom teeth, BFing is becoming something I dread. He is biting pretty much every time he feeds and I have absolutely no idea what to do about it! Anyone else have this problem or any suggestions? I've heard I shouldn't flick because it could make him protest BFing, and I can't pull him off when he does it, even though that's my first instinct, because he just bights down harder. My mom never BF'd me and my sister stopped BFing her kids before they got teeth and nobody else has ever had this problem that I have talked to.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Biting.

    Ouch! Poor mama.

    Definitely no flicking. That's just hitting by another name. When a baby bites, generally moms are advised to take the baby off the breast, calmly but firmly say "no biting", and perhaps put the baby down. If the baby is still hungry, wait a minute and then pick him back up and nurse him. It may take multiple repetitions, but eventually the baby should learn that biting = end of nursing, and that if he wants to stay on the breast he has to not chomp on mama.

    Babies often bite at the end of a feeding when they are no longer nursing for food, but rather just playing around. You may want to stay alert for that moment when the baby transitions to a less businesslike nursing pattern, so that you can be ready for biting and ready to deal with it.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Biting.

    What I had to do with Eve was pull her in closer when she bit (this covers her nose and makes her release my poor nipple) then I would put her on the floor. I would wait probably 30 seconds because I can't stand to let her cry. It seems to be the interruption that does it. You'll probably have to do this a few times before your baby gets it. Eve would bit anytime she was teething. So each time she would start I would have to retrain her not to.
    Eve also started biting when I got lazy and tried to use nursing to distract her when she was bored.
    July 30, 2010-6lbs 2oz- 41w 4d (emergency c-section.) Known dairy, eggs, dogs and cats allergies, eczema, and asthma
    Bonus June 22, 2006 (is 50/50 Custody ) (born 32w) Sensitive to changing temps.
    We BF, BW, Co-sleep and use cloth diapers/pull-ups!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Biting.

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    Definitely no flicking. That's just hitting by another name.
    I'm wondering if she meant "flinch" rather than "flick."

    Because yes, if you react in a way that startles him too much or scares him, it might make him reluctant to nurse. On the other, hand showing no reaction probably isn't a good idea either, because he does need some kind of cue to help him learn what's okay and what's not, what works and what doesn't.

    My experience matches what mommal said about biting often happening at the end of a feeding -- when baby is hungry, nursing actively, and swallowing milk, there's no time or opportunity for biting. It's after the milk flow slows down and they're basically done that they're likely to start messing around. If you watch and figure out when it's likely to happen, you can kind of be ready to stick a finger in between his gums and take him off at the first sign of trouble. And like mommal said, tell him "No," and put him down for a few minutes. A lot of babies grasp the cause and effect of that process pretty quickly. It can also happen with teething, in which case you might want to give him something else to chew on. Does it seem like it happens at the end of a feeding in your case? Have you noticed a pattern?

    A couple other thoughts --

    - I've heard that if a baby is in a position where his chin is tucked close to his chest, it can make biting more likely, just because it's a hard position to nurse in. That's something easy to check for, and if you see it, just adjust his position a bit so that his head is tipped back and his chin is out, so he can move his jaw and swallow easily.

    - Some babies will clamp down if they can't keep up with the flow of milk. If that were the case you'd probably see it close to the beginning of a feeding, and he might also gulp, choke, or pull off altogether. Does any of that sound familiar?

    I don't know if it makes you feel any better, but I think this does happen to pretty much all moms who nurse past when their baby gets their first teeth. The good news is that most of the time it doesn't last very long. Hang in there!
    Karen
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Biting.

    Lunas just started doing hte biting. she also likes to grab my ther brest and firmly twist. idk why shes doing this, but when she does i pull her off and say no and hold off.
    Luna Justine: born January 20 th 6 am on the dot
    I did it! Now without the nipple shield 100% of the time Since 2/12

    We are now self-latching! .

    ing about . expecting to start in 2 weeks.

    Blame strange autocorrect if my posts come out weird. More often than not typing one handed on a "smart" object or just ing

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Biting.

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*LLLKaren View Post
    I'm wondering if she meant "flinch" rather than "flick."
    Oh, good point! I assumed she meant flick because that's what my dad suggested when my kid bit- to "Flick her on the nose, and she'll get the picture!". Yeah, terrific suggestion, dad!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Biting.

    My husband keeps telling me to bite back. lol Good thing he's the dad!
    July 30, 2010-6lbs 2oz- 41w 4d (emergency c-section.) Known dairy, eggs, dogs and cats allergies, eczema, and asthma
    Bonus June 22, 2006 (is 50/50 Custody ) (born 32w) Sensitive to changing temps.
    We BF, BW, Co-sleep and use cloth diapers/pull-ups!

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Biting.

    I too had biting trouble when my little guy got two bottom teeth at about 6 1/2 months old. It was really bad at first. I tried taking him off and telling him no and putting him down and neither of those worked. What helped a little was sitting down to feed with a cold teether and when he bit I would put the teether in his mouth for him to bite on. It got to the point that he would hold the teether in one hand and alternate between the teether and the breast. Kinda funny! I also had a friend tell me that reacting in anyway seemed to make her daughter bite more. So as crazy as it sounds, I quit reacting and when he bit I would take him off the breast or switch sides without saying anything. Oddly enough that seemed to work the best. He rarely bites anymore and he's almost 8 months old now. Another thing I did was I got to the point that I could watch his latch and when it started to change I could take him off before he bit. Good luck and hang in there!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Biting.

    Great suggestions so far. I just wanted to add that when my daughter was doing this I had to start watching closely with my finger ready to break suction and unlatch her. They have to stop sucking and pull in their tongue before they can bite so if you're paying attention you can pop them off before they bite. Doing this combined with removing her from the breast and saying, "No biting, that hurts mommy" and leaving her off the breast for 30 seconds or so when she did manage to get a bite in worked for me.
    “We are not put on earth for ourselves, but are placed here for each other. If you are there always for others, then in time of need, someone will be there for you.”
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Biting.

    Saying "Ouch, no biting" abruptly but calmly worked pretty quickly for me to stop conscious biting. However, if my son falls asleep at the breast he will still occasionally bite, especially if he's dealing with a flare up of teething pain. As long as I remember to remove my nipple from his mouth shortly after he falls asleep, then we don't have biting problems anymore.

    My aunt told me to flick his cheek, but that seemed cruel and was totally unnecessary for us.

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