When Baby Bites You While Breastfeeding

Michele Zipp
11

baby with teethMy twins are 7 months old and Penelope has two teeth on the bottom already. When I first saw them I was so nervous of her biting me when I was breastfeeding her, but it hasn't happened. But Hunter, my little man with no teeth, bites. Hard. After he does it, he smiles. I wince. And then I'm so thankful he doesn't have teeth ... yet.

I know what's going on -- he's playing. Sadly, he thinks my nipple is his toy. And he's teething. But how can I get him to stop?

The first thing I did was yell, "Ouch!" I didn't think this out though, it's just the word that was blurted out when he first did it. It upset him and then I was more upset about startling him than I was about my hurting nipple.

When it happened again during another feeding, I took him off the breast for a few minutes, then put him back on and there wasn't any biting.

I also learned that I have to pay attention to him when he is nursing. If I look away or talk he seems to get mad at me. So if I look at him and let him hold on to my finger, he doesn't bite. And me keeping my eyes on him also lets me see when he is going to bite me. He stops nursing, then starts to turn his head to the side and that's when he would bite. When I see this happening, I am able to unlatch him.

We just started solids and I heard that it was better to breastfeed before baby eats -- this is what we are doing now. But I also heard it's better to nurse after the solids to wash it down. Maybe after is better so he has some food first and gets the biting notion out of the way? But I don't want him to be disinterested in nursing after having some food.

How have you dealt with a biter during breastfeeding? When you introduced solids, did you nurse before or after?

 

Image via LexsiesMommy/CafeMom

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