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WHEN BABIES ATTACK! Or...how to stop biting.

Posted by on May. 1, 2008 at 10:55 AM
  • 197 Replies
3 moms liked this

Making this a sticky since it's the NUMBER ONE question on this board.

Three strikes. First bite, unlatch, tell baby it hurts, resume feeding.

Second bite, repeat.

Third bite...put baby down, walk away. Feeding is OVER for at least five minutes.

When baby learns that biting means he goes hungry, he stops biting.

A couple more things to make this work: Solids are to FOLLOW nursing, always. Hungry babies nurse. Bored, stuffed babies bite. Never give solids separately or before nursing. They are dessert.

And watch your baby like a hawk for the end of active swallowing and sucking. When that happens, unlatch. Be pre-emptive.

Babies have to be taught not to bite. Hunger is a marvelous teacher.

EDITED TO ADD: Please add your tips and tricks. Questions? Please put them in a separate post so they don't get missed.

And another addition: Sometimes it's more effective to pull them in close to the breast. It smooshes their nose closed and they let go in order to breathe.

by on May. 1, 2008 at 10:55 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Crazyscasey
by on May. 1, 2008 at 3:51 PM
I've tried those techniques with my daughter and they don't work. She's my fourth baby that I'm breastfeeding, and she's 8 months old. She only gets one jar of baby food a week, and she refuses a bottle, so it gets frustrating. I talked to a lady yesterday with the la leche league, and she said to try pulling the baby real close, and it'll make them gasp almost like their suffocating, but they're not, and they'll unlatch themselves. Has anyone else heard of this?
mortylady
by on May. 1, 2008 at 3:55 PM
I got lucky. My son bit one time and I shrieked because it hurt so badly(Those little teeth are SHARP!). Well, he got scared and he rarely bites anymore. When he does, it always catches me off guard and of course I shriek again. No more biting for quite a while! I've heard that some babies think it is funny, but not mine!
ExoticKiss
by on May. 1, 2008 at 3:57 PM
Man...i wish that worked with my daughter. She has no teeth yet but damn it hurts when she chomps down...she thinks it's funny until I cover my breast then she gets mad but she will continue to chomp down if I give it back to her in 5-10 minutes
whitnicole
by on May. 1, 2008 at 5:30 PM
OK, I have not yet had to deal with this problem, but the title of the post cracked me up!  Good luck to all you mama's of attacking babies :)
TarinP
by on May. 1, 2008 at 6:37 PM
I took care of this the first time my little one bit down with her teeth.  A little uncomfortable tug to her hair while she bit to associate the biting with uncomfortable. It works! And she never bit again!
chilipepper77
by on May. 1, 2008 at 9:40 PM
The first time my Daughter bit me she was 9 months old. She's 7 now... anyway I said ouch rather loud and jumped because 1. it hurt, and 2. it startled me. My poor daughter started to cry like I'd never heard her cry before... like I scared her AND hurt her feelings. Anyway I tried to put her back to the breast and she wouldn't take it. I keep trying every day for a couple of weeks and she refused to go back to the breast so she weaned herself. I felt horrible because I didn't mean to scare her and I didn't want to give up on breastfeeding her just yet. My youngest son is only 8 weeks old tomorrow so I haven't been bitten and there's no teeth so that's good. He does however like to latch on and then pull his head back while sucking.... that hurts... or sometimes he's not even on the nipple but next to it and starts to suck and that REALLY hurts. I just hope he doesn't become a biter as he gets older.
Mom71307
by on May. 1, 2008 at 10:21 PM
I have both heard this and tried it.  However, it did not work for my daughter.  She is a stubborn little thing and we had to flick her cheek as the "third" strike to get her to stop.  This method took 3 days, and not with her 7 teeth, she doesn't even bite at other times!  We simply warn her before she bites and she moves her mouth away and does not bite.  If she did bite, she would get flicked!  WE USED THIS AS A LAST RESORT WHEN NOTHING ELSE WORKED.  SO, IF NOTHING ELSE WORKS, FLICKING THE CHEEK DOES...NOT HARD ENOUGH TO REALLY HURT BUT BOY DOES IT GET ATTENTION!!!!!!
Quoting Crazyscasey:

I've tried those techniques with my daughter and they don't work. She's my fourth baby that I'm breastfeeding, and she's 8 months old. She only gets one jar of baby food a week, and she refuses a bottle, so it gets frustrating. I talked to a lady yesterday with the la leche league, and she said to try pulling the baby real close, and it'll make them gasp almost like their suffocating, but they're not, and they'll unlatch themselves. Has anyone else heard of this?

"And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose." --Romans 8:28
Laureney
by on May. 1, 2008 at 10:23 PM
Yes, but what about the babies whose teeth are grinding against the nipple when they nurse?  It's not a deliberate bite, but boy it hurts!
gdiamante
by Group Mod - Gina on May. 1, 2008 at 10:40 PM

Quoting Crazyscasey:

she said to try pulling the baby real close, and it'll make them gasp almost like their suffocating, but they're not, and they'll unlatch themselves. Has anyone else heard of this?
Yep. It's another very effective method.
bensmommyjenn
by on May. 1, 2008 at 10:53 PM

Quoting gdiamante:


Quoting Crazyscasey:

she said to try pulling the baby real close, and it'll make them gasp almost like their suffocating, but they're not, and they'll unlatch themselves. Has anyone else heard of this?
Yep. It's another very effective method.
I think this works with anytime a kid bites, even toddlers.  If they bite your arm, push your arm into their mouth, and they'll let go.  If they bite the nipple, push the baby's face into the boob, and they'll let go.
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