Breastfeeding

Miranda - posted on 12/22/2009 ( 64 moms have responded )

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My son is 7mths old and i am breast feedng him. He has two teeth now and he is starting to bite. What should i do?

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Cassie - posted on 12/23/2009

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Actually, Jocelyn's advise is often given to nursing mom's whose child begins biting. The child is only pushed into the breast long enough to get him to unlatch on his own. He is not left there to gasp for air or suffocate. Not sure if you breastfed, or dealt with a biting child, but I was often given this advice with my daughter who is still nursing at 14 months and just began biting again two days ago because her molars are coming in. You can choose to follow the advice or pass on it but I assure you it is not child endangerment.

Kelli - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Amanda:



Quoting Jocelyn:

When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite.





 






What kind of mom are you?






This is really cruel and if you did this to your child shame on you! This can be concidered child endangerment and you need to go get your HEAD CHECKED!!!!






 






she's a normal mom....

You are supposed to push the baby towards your breast so they will stop biting by letting go of your nipple so your baby can breathe, then bring the baby to a sitting position everytime. That's not child endangerment... the hospitals and La Leche League say to do that. Maybe her vocab of "squish" wasn't the best word to use, but she didn't mean hurt the baby, and it's a very worldwide known solution for the problem of biting during breastfeeding.



 



My son is a year old and bit so much and after doing that several times, he quit biting.



 



If I were you, I wouldn't tell someone to get her head checked if I didn't know what I was talking about.



 

Betty - posted on 12/23/2009

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EXPERT ADVICE: Please visit the La Leche League International's website http://www.llli.org! They are a world-wide, non-profit organization solely dedicated to breastfeeding from science to practice and even issues of legality. Their website has a wealth of information. Here is their page on biting: http://www.llli.org/NB/NBbiting.html.

Jocelyn's advice can be found in books and other resources. Again, the purpose is not to suffocate your baby; you're simply communicating in a way that your baby understands that what they are doing is hurtful!

Another way to quickly detach your child when nursing is to stick your finger into the corner of your baby's mouth and break the suction. Doing this every time he bites--interrupting his meal--while sternly saying the same phrase each time (e.g. "Ouch!") should eventually teach your baby that it's a better idea to stop doing that. I used both of the methods described with success.

Whatever you do...DO NOT pump if you plan to nurse long term. This will deplete your milk supply as pumping does not draw your milk as efficiently as nursing. Since your milk production is a supply-and-demand function of your body, pumping will slowly dwindle your milk production. Pumping should be used occasionally when you need to travel or be a away from your baby for short periods of time. You can read more about pumping on La Leche League's website: http://www.llli.org/NB/NBpumping.html.

Best of luck and Merry Christmas!

Regina - posted on 12/23/2009

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Giving a bottle is counter productive.



An activitely nursing child cannot bite. Pay a little closer attention. If he does manage to bite, ignore your instinct to pull away. Pull closer. This cuases the baby unable to breath and they will unlease. It creates a negative association.



Check our www.kellymom.com

Meaghan - posted on 12/23/2009

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If your child is actively nursing it is impossible to bite (the tongue covers the bottom teeth). Most babies will pause before biting - pay attention! Have a handy teething toy available to pop in the mouth before the biting begins! If the baby does bite, put your finger in the mouth and pop him off the breast. Remind him "no biting" and give a substitute that is appropriate for teething. If you are consistent, he will learn!
A great tip that another mom taught me - babies don't know that it hurts you. Use the same "ouch" word when the baby is hurt and when you are hurt so that they learn the association. It helps in training the baby not to hurt you!

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Mindy - posted on 12/28/2009

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I'm nursing my 8 month old and yes, he too started biting when he got his teeth in. I just told him no, and removed him from the breast every time he bit, til he learned he couldn't do that.

Rachelle - posted on 12/27/2009

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I found that when my daughter started to bite, I'd scream/yell loud enough to startle her, break her off and talk to her. It only took about three times before she stopped completely.

Denise - posted on 12/26/2009

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I agree with "When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite." Depending on where you live, there is likely a La Leche group somewhere near you. They are a wonderful group that promotes and supports breastfeeding. I never found them to be agressive about it, but I am sure that with my first child I would not have succeeded in breastfeeding had it not been for this group. Their main website is http://www.llli.org/

Vanessa - posted on 12/25/2009

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As I am also breastfeeding a 8 month old with teeth I have tried everything....mostly what works is a strong stern voice as I snap my fingers and say NO and pull out and tell him NO BITE. He needs to assc that if he bites he wont eat. I have also tried lightly flicking his cheek...others say nose but i wont do that....personal choice. congrats on still nursing keep going!!!!

Faline - posted on 12/25/2009

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Way to go on breastfeeding your son! He is getting the BEST!
When baby starts to bite, it's a signal for mom to stay alert. It's virtually impossible for a baby to bite and suck at the same time SO as soon as he stops sucking, put your finger between your breast and his gums to break the suction, and thus protect yourself!
BTW biting often coincides with teething.

[deleted account]

I breast fed both of my boys until they were 18 months. They both went through a biting stage, especially when they were breaking teeth. I just said a sharp "NO" when they bit and took the boob away to make sure they understood that I did not like that. They learned pretty fast. Only drew blood a couple of times. lol :)

Brenda - posted on 12/24/2009

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well everytime he tries to bite let him know that hurts mommy as he breastfeed talk to him or sing and rub his fingers into your face he will be relax and you to i have 4 kids two boys 16 ,14 , two girls 11, 6 year old my two girls breastfeed the 11 yo for like 6 mounth but my 6 yo for like 2 years and thats what i did and it was awsome it was a good experience shes a healhty girl and very intelligent shes in first grade with straigt A

[deleted account]

I was so fortunate when my kids were nursing as I had a wonderful lactation consultant with whom I could discuss all my worries, including biting. She suggested that whenever an infant bites, to pull him/her off the breast, set them carefully on the floor for about 15-30 seconds. They will cry, but then pick them up and try again. I did this with both kids and it stops the biting after just a few times. For me it was one time and then one time the next day for just one or two days. It was a VERY quick education for both kids. GOOD LUCK!

Cheryl - posted on 12/24/2009

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A poke or a pinch - JUST enough to grab attention, not even enough to make him cry - will begin to break the habit of using you as a teething ring. :) I have six soon-to-be seven children, and this did the trick after a week or so. Be consistent and say - no,no don't bite mommy. Baby begins to associate biting with the uncomfortable poke or pinch and soon stops. It's a good lesson too to learn when we hurt others we get hurt through consequence.

Miranda - posted on 12/23/2009

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I REALLY APPRICIATE EVERYONE'S ADVICE. SINCE I'VE BEEN TELLING HIM "NO" AND TAKING HIM OFF WHEN HE BITES ME, I THINK HE IS REALIZING THAT IF HE BITES ME THEN IM NOT GOING TO FINISH AT THAT MOMENT

Dana - posted on 12/23/2009

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Take him off your breast set him down and walk away. He will understand very quickly that if I do this, mom does that. He won't like it.

Dawnie - posted on 12/23/2009

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Tell him firmly no, expalin that it hurts. If he continues remove him from the breast to let him know this is unacceptable. Although it hurts pls understand that baby is also experimenting. It may also mean that he may be ready for some food so he can use his peggers.

Alison - posted on 12/23/2009

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Stop nursing when he bites and allow him to nurse when he is interested in nursing. He is only experimenting with the new things in his mouth. He cannot get food when he is biting so just be aware whenever he stops sucking and do not allow him to start playing or experimenting. Above all do not react in a fearful way, be calm and clear about what you will allow and what you will stop. I nursed my daughter and did not have the problem for more than a couple days. I knew what to do being a nurse myself. Enjoy your baby. Mine is 40 and has two of her own. Alison.

Christina - posted on 12/23/2009

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Honestly hurting your child back like these parents are saying is appalling....he's 7 months he has no idea how to empathize anyone else's feelings or pain. Any doctor will tell you when he bites to detach him,with your finger in the side of his mouth to loosen suction,tell him "no biting" and stop the feeding and resume breastfeeding at a different time.He's probably not going to learn the first time so be patient and consistant.Breastfeeding is the best thing for him...my daughter has only been sick once in two and a half years and it was only for a day and I was only able to breastfeed for three months.If you want to pump you can but breastfeeding for seven months you know that it is also a bond only you and your son share and it's your decision to stop but whatever you decide I wish you the best.

Dianne - posted on 12/23/2009

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Train him to a cup!!!
I never had a bottle in my life and to this day I cannot drink from a bottle(pop or beer) without spilling and I am 60 now I always use a glass
Gramma Di

Betty - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting christina:

But, my advice to anyone breastfeeding would be to stick it out as long as you can, but stop when you feel like you need too. I'm not saying I enjoy it 100% of the time or that it's not a challenge everyday, because it is! There are days when it feels like it will never end! But my son is very heathy, never gets sick and when he does he kicks everything so fast. I could go on about the benefits.......

=)


Yes! I so agree with you, Christina! Breastfeeding has innumerable benefits. There is just too much information, both scientific and observationsl data, for anyone not to be convinced. Kudos to all nursing moms for doing the best thing for their kids. We all know it's a worthy sacrifice.



 



So...Miranda, you've had a lot of responses! What are your thoughts? Have you tried any of the advice? What worked for you? We'd love to know is we've helped!

Christina - posted on 12/23/2009

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I am still breastfeeding my 20m old son and he has a mouth full of teeth. He did bite, mostly when he got his first few teeth in.



I just stayed in tune with him and noticed that he was only biting when he was full or really tired or both! I didn't scare him, but I let him know that it hurt mommy. Then I just started to take him off when I noticed these things. He doesn't bite me anymore, but there have been a few times he has play bite me, not knowing how serious that is to us!



But, my advice to anyone breastfeeding would be to stick it out as long as you can, but stop when you feel like you need too. I'm not saying I enjoy it 100% of the time or that it's not a challenge everyday, because it is! There are days when it feels like it will never end! But my son is very heathy, never gets sick and when he does he kicks everything so fast. I could go on about the benefits.......



=)

Darlene - posted on 12/23/2009

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tell him no and litely flick his mouth they learn fast i did it with all 3 of my kids

Camille - posted on 12/23/2009

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Squishing him into the boob isn't child abuse. o_O It's well-known advice for biting the nipple. People who don't breastfeed may not understand the mechanics. It's not like you're stopping your baby from breathing. You're just saying, let go if you want to breathe. All the baby has to do is let go and pull away. It's not deprived of air. And it's only for a few seconds.

[deleted account]

Screaming can actually scare him enough to cause a nursing strike. The advice about squishing him into your boob is not as harsh as it sounds. If my daughter bites and won't let go I gently pinch her nose. This causes her to automatically let go so she can breathe. I don't do it hard or hold on. Here's a link with some great info on how to prevent biting and what to do when baby bites.

http://www.kellymom.com/bf/older-baby/bi...

Cassie - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Jocelyn:



Quoting Amanda:




Quoting Jocelyn:

When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite.







 








What kind of mom are you?








This is really cruel and if you did this to your child shame on you! This can be concidered child endangerment and you need to go get your HEAD CHECKED!!!!








 









BAHAHA OMFG do you think I squish them until they pass out or something?!   *shakes head*  This is common knowlege in the breastfeeding world; and btw my son only ever bit me twice :P






And thanks Cassie for sticking up for me!





No problem!!! :)

Camille - posted on 12/23/2009

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YELL as soon as he bites you and then ignore him for a minute or so. Then do not let him nurse for like a half an hour. That worked with mine. Good luck!

Tiffany - posted on 12/23/2009

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Its okay to say no to him. He is old enough to start getting it. My son did the same thing. He also weened himself at 10 months.

Rachel - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Jocelyn:



Quoting Rachel:




Quoting Jocelyn:

When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite.



sorry i felt that the other posters had given the appropriate information that i would have passed on from my own experience. I breastfed for 9 months also had a few bites but i never attempted to 'squish' her into my boob nor was i ever advised to do so.




wow thats a bit harsh!!!!!









At least I'm offering (well known and widely accepted) advice instead of just making comments that don't answer the op...





 

Christina - posted on 12/23/2009

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Breaking him off is the fastest way to take care of it, but if that doesn't work try my Mom's trick. (She says it worked in just a couple tries with both my sister and I) Once he latches on and starts feeding put your hand by his foot ready to flick his toes the moment he bites. When he bites, flick him HARD on the toes or bottom of the foot. He won't see that it was you but will know that biting=pain and that leaves a very vivid memory for them and they stop.

Angela - posted on 12/23/2009

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There is nothing much you can do other than giving him a very firm NO when he bites and releasing him off the breast, try and explain in terms he would understand that it hurts you when he bites. You get those who bite and those who do not. I breastfed all 3 my boys and my middle one was a biter, at 15 months I had to stop breastfeeding because the biting got so bad. The other two bit once or twice but did not like being taken off the breast when they did so they did not chance it after that.

Rebecca - posted on 12/23/2009

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It may seem a little cruel, but I pinch my son's noise (gently, of course). Then I put him on the floor and say, "NO!" My son started biting at 7 months old. He's now 8 months old and has 6 teeth and doesn't really bite on purpose anymore. The only bites I get is when he's tired and about done nursing.

Teresa - posted on 12/23/2009

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I would try pumping and feed him with a bottle. If that does not work then try some of the others suggestions of breaking him off when he starts biting. My son did the same thing at this age.

Leah Van - posted on 12/23/2009

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My daughter did the same thing when she had two teeth, I would delatch her from my nipple, tap her mouth with my hand, and put her back on. After a few times of doing that, she learned pretty quickly not to do it anymore.

Jenn - posted on 12/23/2009

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When he bites, plug his nose (or squish him into your boob, as someone else said on here) so he can't breathe and will let go. My daughter used to bite sometimes and plugging her nose always got her to let go and after maybe 3 times of doing this, she never bit again. I was told that plugging the baby's nose and trying not to react to the bite at all (don't get mad, or laugh, or whatever because if you give any reaction at all, the baby might continue to do it, just to get a reaction out of you), will teach them. I found this did work - I found plugging her nose made her release quickly and she learned that she couldn't do that. Good luck!!

Dawn - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Miranda:

Breastfeeding

My son is 7mths old and i am breast feedng him. He has two teeth now and he is starting to bite. What should i do?



i breastfed and at this time changed him to cows milk i know they tell you not to now as its what midwives are told,but as long as they have a good fresh food diet what they eat they are very healthy. my son had gilberts diease which affected his blood count a is now 16 and a very healthy boy playing rugby and football

Karen - posted on 12/23/2009

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I agree you should never try to hurt a baby! You can do more with voice tones than most people know.

Alicia - posted on 12/23/2009

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If your baby is biting because of teething, try giving him a frozen wash cloth or other teething toy about 15 minutes before you nurse. That way, he won't need to use you as a teether.
During nursing, listen for when his swallowing slows down. My daughter loves to bite as her way of telling me she's done nursing. If I'm paying attention, I can avoid it by seeing the warning signs: not swallowing and that impish grin.
I too have read Jocelyn's advice in many good nursing books. The baby's nose is brought again the breast just enough to block the nostrils. The baby immediately opens her mouth to breathe. Thus she unlatches. The whole process takes a second. Large-breasted women have probably had their babies unlatch when the breast accidentally blocks the nostrils. I've never done it to my daughter on purpose, but she's been unphased by the times it has happened accidentally. She opens her mouth to breathe, I use my finger to keep my breast from her nose, and she goes back to work.
I wouldn't flick or pinch the baby, as that will cause the baby pain.

Jocelyn - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Rachel:



Quoting Jocelyn:

When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite.






wow thats a bit harsh!!!!!





At least I'm offering (well known and widely accepted) advice instead of just making comments that don't answer the op...

Karen - posted on 12/23/2009

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If it makes you uncomfortable you should start weening him.Breatsmilk has nutritional value you cannot buy at the supermarket. I breast fed all three of my boys. When they bite I would start the weening process. At that age they are old enough to understand what you expect. Let him know it hurts and he will have to eat some babyfood if he continuse or give him a bottle with water. He is teething you could also try some orajel it will numb the gums and maybe he will not be tempted to bite you.

Rachel - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Jocelyn:

When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite.



wow thats a bit harsh!!!!!

Christina - posted on 12/23/2009

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Use a stern voice and tell him no! You voice will make him stop and he will stop doing that. Both of kids did that and they will stop. I nursed both of mine for the first year and they had a mouth full of teeth.

Jocelyn - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Amanda:



Quoting Jocelyn:

When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite.





 






What kind of mom are you?






This is really cruel and if you did this to your child shame on you! This can be concidered child endangerment and you need to go get your HEAD CHECKED!!!!






 





BAHAHA OMFG do you think I squish them until they pass out or something?!   *shakes head*  This is common knowlege in the breastfeeding world; and btw my son only ever bit me twice :P



And thanks Cassie for sticking up for me!

Ann - posted on 12/23/2009

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I had one that was a biter at birth....even with no teeth...It hurt so bad most of the entire 8 months I nursed. I weaned at the time of teeth.....I didn't want to deal with that but luckily for me, she was ready for "heavier" foods/formula at 8 months anyway.

Anne - posted on 12/23/2009

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I breastfed my daughter until 20 months - and by the end she had most of her teeth! It's important to set some ground rules early on - immediately stop breastfeeding and say no if they bite. If they think it is funny or continue, just stop and tell them why and start again in a little bit. They understand quite a bit even at seven months. Sometimes if they are teething or feeling sick, they sort of gnaw a little bit and that is different than intentionally biting, even though it can still hurt. Make sure you react differently for intentional biting vs uncomfortable teething/comfort gnawing even though they both hurt!

Good luck, your breasts actually adapt for the most part. Remember how painful the first few weeks were, but then got better? The same happens as your baby grows if they keep breastfeeding. A hard bite will still hurt, of course, and that is mostly what you are trying to teach them not to do. And those little ones seem to catch on pretty quick if you are consistent and firm!

Michelle - posted on 12/23/2009

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my son never bite, however he latched on more so that his teeth dug in, I never really thought it was a problem as he still nursed well. Later I learned that his "poor' latch might have helped to make his mouth muscles weak so his speech was late because of that.

Mattee - posted on 12/23/2009

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This one is kind of harsh and my son has never bitten me, but my friend said her daughter bit her and it took her by such surprise that she flicked under chin and said "no". I thought it was kinda mean, but she said she never tried it again.

Melissa - posted on 12/23/2009

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I breastfed my son and around 6 months he got 2 teeth. When I breastfed him one time, he bit me hard. I stopped feeding him and told him in a stern voice "No bite mommy!!" and that was it. I didn't go back to feeding him either. Just so he got the point that if he bit me, he wouldn't get any food. He never nit me again. Hope this helps. Happy Holiday's!!

Stacey - posted on 12/23/2009

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Take him off breast and tell him no it hurts u using a stern voice. My son stopped very quickly, he didnt like having his feeding interupted. I noticed he tried it again when he was teething but I did the same thing as before and he stopped again. Good luck!

Cassie - posted on 12/23/2009

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I also wanted to say that I agree with other mothers. If a child is actively nursing, it is impossible for him to bite. He must somewhat unlatch in order to expose his bottom teeth to bite. If, even after unlatching and telling him "no biting", he continues to bite, he may be telling you that he is done eating and just wanting to play.

When my daughter bites me, I typically unlatch her and tell her "no" sternly. Once she has been latched back on, if she begins biting immediately (usually doing so with a smile on her face lol) I unlatch her and that nursing session is complete. A child can not be biting and actively nursing at the same time so they have often finished eating when they begin biting.

Anna - posted on 12/23/2009

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I went through that too and luckily he wasnt feeling good so it was only a two day faze! My doctor told me that you need to take them off and tap there cheek saying no. Do it three times (in one feeding) and if he continues to bit take him off the breast. Good luck....

Amanda - posted on 12/23/2009

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If it gets to the point you can not stand it anymore, you might want to consider pumping if you still want to give him breast milk. I know that it a bonding thing between mother and child but if he breaks skin and it bleeds and you feed him again then it could cause you to have an infection and that will not be good. I also agree with a few moms that say to unlatch him and tell him no that hurts. Good luck in whatever you decide.

Amanda - posted on 12/23/2009

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Quoting Jocelyn:

When he bites you, squish him into your boob so he can't breath. He will let go on his own and learn very quickly not to bite.


 



What kind of mom are you?



This is really cruel and if you did this to your child shame on you! This can be concidered child endangerment and you need to go get your HEAD CHECKED!!!!



 

Sarah - posted on 12/23/2009

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Hi, I breastfed my first child Noah til he was almost 2, he only ever bit me once, it was so sore and I couldn't get him off that I pinched his cheek, the harder he bit the harder I pinched til he let go, he cried and resumed drinking, but never bit me again, I'm not saying this is the best policy, but if you have a baby with a very strong sucking that is difficult to get off when they do bite, this worked for me. I didn't have the problem with my 2nd child as he only breastfed for 8mths due to very bad reflux and eventually he had to go onto Soya milk. Hpe you find one of the posted replies works for you.

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