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Biting Rss

My Son has just started to bite his play mate 2yr old girl when she does something that hurts him.
Any ideas how we should handle this,I've heard that you should bite them back.

Kerryn,NSW,2yr old

hi,
I know what you mean my son will be playing and just came and bite me or be kissing me and than he bites. Some people told me to bite him back i try it and it didn't work i didn't want to do it hard. U could try ignoring it but its really hard.
sorry not much help just a few suggestions.

Tracy, NSW,12mth & expecting

I have a 5yr old son he starting biting when he was 2 then the pinching starts etc I stopped him from doing it back ask him if it hurts that sort of thing, also told him to do it to himself to see how sharp his teeth were and explained how they ripped meat apart & bite apples explained animals teeth etc. Lot of hand actions different tones in voice, pictures from books then ask them what and why teeth are sharp & hurt. He stopped. (P.s. try not to use "why" that word is easily picked up & used over & over.....) But how do I stopped a 9month old teething from biting? she doesnt understand stories etc.

Jan, 9mth girl & 5yrs boy

Wow your story techniques you used on your 5 year old are great, I have a 21 month old that I might try this on, I don't think intellectually he is quite ready but, in a few months he should be there.

Re the 9 month old, I think it is just too early, it is teething related and she can't quite do as much damage as a toddler yet, so maybe just watch her until she is a bit older, thats what I had to do with my first.
Dear Kerryn, most importantly do not bite back! Children often learn by example and you give mixed messages by saying "don't bite" and then bite the child yourself.

The best response for a young child (be specific in a calm controlled voice)) is to say OUCH!! Biting mummy's "leg" hurts or biting little "johnnie" on the arm hurts. Then you should distract the child with a positive activity that you can give them praise for.

Biting could be a sensory experience for a young child or an attention seeking behaviour in an older child. If attention seeking and you are sure the child knows that biting hurts you can simply say "people do not bite each other" then totally ignore the child for a few minutes. Then provide the chilld with an alternate activity you can praise them for!!

Teaching them positive ways to gain attention or resolve conflicts should extinguish the unwanted and anti-social biting.
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