Thursday, October 16, 2008

Why do toddlers bite?

During the ages of 12 months to 3 years old, children seem to bite for a reason. Although, I am not a mother yet, but I am the oldest among 12 children so I have notice this pattern from my younger sisters down to my younger brothers.

Unfortunately, we can't read their minds,however, there may be many reason that they respond this way. For some children they used their mouth as a form of sensory exploration. One reason can be teething, in which children don't even know they are hurting another person. Another can be because they see other kids biting other kids. Sometimes when they see another toddler bite they learn to imitate the action. They might used this to get the attention of their parents or used as communication. Biting occurs out of frustration, fatigue or stress.

Is there anyway we can do to stop them from biting? Although we know supervision is crucial but it is strictly needed in order for us to achieved on stopping this biting behavior. If possible, redirect the child and remain physically close to the biter. Help toddlers to express with words and gestures their needs and wants.

When your toddler bites, immediately attend to the victim to provide comfort and care and then respond to the biter and explain that "No biting, Biting hurts". You may do redirection by putting your toddler to time out or provide something more appropriate for the mouth.

Remember parents:

1. Never bite a child back to show that biting hurts. This will send a confusing message to your toddler.

2. Do not respond in a harsh verbal manner. Take note parents, biting at this age; is appropriate. Your job as a parents,or adults is to teach that biting is not acceptable. Practice what you teach.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I never had problems with my 2 boys about biting. my daughter however picked it up from watching a TV show. When her brother pissed her off one time she responded with a big bite! i actually spanked her and told her that biting is not really a nice thing to do and after that one incident, she never did again.Of course I don't think she wants another spanking!

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