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Thread: Pulling on nipple (really hard!)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    92

    Default Pulling on nipple (really hard!)

    I don't know if LO is teething but recently she began biting down and pulling my nipple (as if it were made of rubber). It really hurts so I tell her no and make a stern face but she just looks at me and tries again.. and again. We've ended several nursing sessions b/c of this. She has no teeth and isn't drooling (doc also said her gums weren't swollen a few days ago at her 9-mos check up so didn't think her teeth would come soon). Anyone experience this? How'd you get LO to stop doing it?

    I've also noticed since she hit 9-mos and recently mastered her crawling, she's became much more high needs (separation anxiety, whining, and easily cries) is this a temporary change in temperment, or a new baby?

    thanx

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,965

    Default Re: Pulling on nipple (really hard!)

    Sounds like teething to me. 9 months old- those teeth are coming soon!

    Dealing with biting takes patience and persistence. Baby bites = you put her down and step away. It can take a lot of repetitions before the baby gets the message that biting means the end of fun nursing time.
    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
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,430

    Default Re: Pulling on nipple (really hard!)

    Two of my kids were/are regular biters at about this age. In my experience, it is a phase. I say “ow!” or “No biting” as calmly as possible (sometimes that is not very calmly at all) and put baby down for a minute (or roll away or otherwise take baby off the breast) and try not to take it personally, which is really really hard because it hurts! But baby is not trying to hurt.

    Since your baby is pulling as well, gently and momentarily pulling baby's face INTO the breast to get baby to let go may help, and if you have not already, you may have to learn how to very quickly get your pinky into the corner of baby's mouth to get baby to release so baby is not still clamping as baby is pulled off the nipple as that can cause injury.

    Separation anxiety does tend to emerge around this age, and is in my opinion a normal baby survival instinct. I actually dislike the term "separation anxiety" because it implies there is nothing to be anxious about, when to a baby, of course being separated from mom (or another regular caregiver) is upsetting. Obviously it varies in intensity from child to child, but I think of it this way-Baby is now old enough to crawl or walk away from mom on his own, so baby is beginning to grasp that mom is a separate being that baby can be separated FROM. A nine moth old baby can be eaten by anything bigger than a nine month old baby, so the smart babies say “Mom, I have to crawl over here because I am learning this new skill, but you stay right there where I can see you!” Or "Wow, this is cool-crawling crawling crawling...Yikes! where'd everybody GO? Whaaa!"

    Later, it might be mom having separation anxiety when her toddler takes off across the park and gets lost in a crowd of kids.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Pulling on nipple (really hard!)

    My LO is only just 3 months and she does this . . . just started it about 2 weeks ago. She's drooling like CRAZY all the time but doctor saw no visible signs of teeth emerging just yet. It DOES hurt!

    I slip my pinky finger in between her mouth and my nipple and go for a 'quick release' . . . !

    Can't *wait* till she gets teeth... oyyye.
    Life is Beautiful.

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