Why does a baby bite during breastfeeding?

Baby biting during breastfeeding is a common thing that many of the mothers experience during the breastfeeding period. Many mothers think when baby gets teeth and starts biting then it is time to wean. But this is not true! Find out the some of the reasons baby bites during breastfeeding and ways to prevent it.

Why Does A Baby Bite During Breastfeeding?

  • When latched on properly, it is impossible for your baby to bite. The biting happens mostly if the tongue is not positioned well. So, it is very important to make sure that the baby is latched well to the nipple and most of the areola is inside the baby’s mouth.
  • A baby may bite when he is teething to seek comfort.
  • When a baby is in pain due to cold/flu/ ear infection, then he may find it hard to suck and can bite.
  • Babies sometimes may bite at the end of the feeding session when they are full or when they get bored.
  • For some babies, any kind of disturbance while feeding can make them bite. Make sure that you feed the baby in a quiet place as far as possible.
  • When the baby falls asleep during feeding, he is most likely to bite. Always be alert and when the baby tends to doze off, remove him from the breast. If it starts dozing off, use your finger to remove your nipple from the baby’s mouth.
  • If you are not attentive to your baby while feeding him, he is likely to bite you. Some babies bite just to see the mother’s reaction.
  • If the milk is not freely flowing into your baby’s mouth, he may bite out of frustration. Therefore, ensure that the milk supply is good.

Ways to prevent baby from biting while breastfeeding

  • Do not scream: Screaming and scaring a baby is not a good way to prevent the baby from biting. This can cause the baby to stop breastfeeding or baby can mistake it to be some game and will continue biting for fun.
  • Put finger: Be alert and observe when the baby is about to bite you. This can happen when the baby is dozing off or when the baby is bored. Make use of your finger to pull your nipple from the baby’s mouth.
  • Pull the baby towards the breast: During breastfeeding time, the baby is breathing through the nose. When he starts to bite you, instead of pulling the baby away from the breast pull him closer to you. When baby’s nose is blocked, she will automatically open the mouth to breathe.
  • Feed him only when he is hungry:  Feeding the baby when he is not hungry increases the chances of biting.
  • Talk to your baby: Always talk to your baby while feeding him like singing, humming or telling a story.
  • Maintain a good position: A good position plays a significant role and prevents the baby from biting you.  Find out the best and the comfortable position that works for both of you.
  • Teach and warn the baby: You can teach your little one and warn him the moment she bites. The best way is to put your baby down when it bites and continue nursing only after a moment. Babies are smart and will slowly understand that biting means an end to feeding.

All babies are different, so you need to try different things before you learn what works for you and your little one! Happy Feeding.

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