What about biting?

QUESTION:

What do I do about biting?

Answer:

For biting, there is no cure like supervision. When you see your child about to bite, you can prevent it with a gentle placement of the forefinger sideways under the chin with just enough gentle pressure (practice on yourself) to keep them from opening their mouth to bite. Sling these babies. Redirect and distract. And look for the emotional volcano building up that erupts with the biting.

Provide oral stimulation: lemonade and other sour, bitter, or super sweet things; gum chewing if they are mature enough; sucking on ice; using straws; spicy foods; sucking lemons; etc.

Supervise, supervise, supervise! Provide an emotional vocabulary and words to express themselves – baby signs if necessary. And teach them to call you for help, making sure you are quick to offer it. Often biting is a pre-verbal or early verbal toddlers’ frustrated way to let it be known they are not pleased. We need to make sure that we are their advocates when they call for us and that, as they learn words, some of the first they learn are how to set boundaries for themselves.