Toddlers biting is a stressful time for parents and it feels like a very strange way, but is very normal for toddlers to do. However stopping biting behaviour is a difficult life for parents and the child’s caregivers. A lot of the time parents find themselves looking for a new child carer because their child isn’t welcome any more due to their biting behaviour. So let’s have a look at:
Why do toddlers bite?
The first thing to do is to find out why they bite. They could be learning, teething, frustrated or defending themselves. Theses are the four main reason why a toddler bites and we will look at them more closely.
Think back to when your toddler was just learning to crawl and discover about their surrounding they put everything into their mouth. It is a way to learn about the taste and texture of the world around them and biting is just an extension of that type of learning.
When your toddlers teeth are coming through their gums get inflamed and irritated where all they are looking to do is to relive that pain so chomping down on a bit of skin is a good idea at the time.
Your child is learning to communicate and they don’t have a very large vocabulary at this age so it might just be a case that they are expressing themselves through biting. They may just be trying to get attention say their bored or frustrated. It could also be way to getting their toy back or encourage another child to go away.
Bullying happens it’s a fact at any age someone will be bullied. To find their way through their social peers, toddlers may bite to “save face” or to keep a toy.
You should keep a close eye on your child and find out why they bite. Watching them closely will not only give you the reason why they bite but also help you to avoid them from biting again. You will need to work with your childcarers to ensure your toddler is supervised at all time other wise you might miss the opportunity.
Prevent or change the behaviour
Now that you have discover the reason behind your toddlers bite you should be able to prevent them from doing it or change the behavioural reasons for why they are biting.
So if they do it because it feels good to them or they are teething give them a teething toy or something else that they can chew on. The idea here is to meet the needs of your child without them doing something that is wrong. Now that you have taught the a way of meeting their needs without biting someone make sure it is in a place they can get at it.
Biting in self-defence or frustration is to do with communication and you will need to show them a better way of communicating with some one. If they can say “no” or “stop” teach them to use their words not their teeth.
It takes a lot of time and energy to create better behaviours in our children due to the fact that you have to watch closely because at any moment they could bite. But the end results is well worth the effort.
But always remember as parents we need eyes in the back of our heads and we just don’t have them there so if you do miss the opportunity to prevent a bite pay more attention to the child that was bitten rather than the one doing the biting. Show the child that bit that they hurt some one and they need to use words not teeth. You want to get the balance of discipline and learning that it wrong to bite otherwise they may see biting as a way to get your attention even if it is negative.
Just keep in mind that it is a normal phase that toddlers go through and you are not to blame for it just keep up the good work of rising your toddler and try to grow eyes in the back of your head.