1 Does this Sound Familiar? Responding to M. arc is preparing dinner and his two children Jack Your Child's Bite (3 years) and Jalen (11/2 years) are playing with cars on the kitchen floor. Suddenly, Marc hears a bloodcurdling scream coming from Jack that quickly turns into sobs. Between sobs, Jack shows his dad his arm and slowly says, He bit me. Jalen has bitten Jack. Marc is frustrated. He doesn't know what to do. Jalen bites often. He bites his brother, other children on the playground, and children in his childcare class. Marc is not sure how to respond.
2 He wonders if he should use time out as a consequence, but thinks that Jalen is just too young to understand the relationship between biting and a time out.. The Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning Vanderbilt University The Focus Exploration and learning One of the most important ways toddlers What Can You Do? Many toddlers and young children bite. learn about their world is through Children can be taught more appropriate Developmentally, most toddlers don't their senses. Biting might be a way ways to express their needs and have enough words to express how to find out what an object, or person, feelings.
3 They are feeling. They primarily rely on feels like. In other words, their biting sounds and actions to communicate what they are thinking and feeling.. might be trying to communicate, You seem interesting. I wonder Observe Biting is one of the ways toddlers what you feel and taste like? Observe your child to attempt to express their needs, desires, or understand more about why he/she feelings. While biting might be very Oral stimulation Some children bites. Identify any patterns, such as frustrating, your child is not biting bite because they enjoy and seek out what happens before your child bites.
4 Purposefully annoy you or hurt the physical sensation of biting or Notice when, where, and who your anyone. Your child might be biting to chewing. child bites. Does he/she bite when say, I'm scared, People are Teething Many children crowded in a small space with other crowding me, or, I'm frustrated. experience pain when they are children, or when he/she is hungry or Naturally, parents and caregivers worry teething. Biting or chewing on sleepy? Does he/she bite when there are that biting might seriously injure something can help ease the pain of a number of children present or when another child.
5 And they worry about teething. the noise level is high? the negative impact for the biter as Monkey see, monkey do Toddlers well, such as being avoided by other love to imitate or copy the behaviors children. The good news is that there of others. They learn so much by are many ways to reduce and to stop a practicing behaviors they observe. child's biting. For example, if Jalen sees Sara bite and sees that Sara receives quite a bit Why Do Children Bite? of attention for biting (even if it is Young children bite for many different negative attention), Jalen might want reasons.
6 Understanding why your to try out that biting behavior to see toddler might be biting is the first step how the various adults in his life in reducing or stopping the behavior. react. The following are some of the reasons Coping with uncomfortable young children bite. feelings When children are hungry, sleepy, bored, or anxious, they are Communicating frustration less able to cope with life's ups and Many young children bite out of downs (for example, a toy being frustration. They often do not know taken, not getting that second cookie other ways to express their strong after lunch) and might resort to feelings.
7 Biting might communicate biting instead of finding other ways messages such as, I don't like that to express their needs or feelings. or I want that toy or You are in Try to prevent biting my space.. Normal but Unacceptable Once you understand why and when your child is likely to bite, you can try to Challenges in playing with While biting is a typical behavior for change situations in order to prevent it. others Some young children can young children, that doesn't mean it is The following are just a few ways you become overwhelmed when playing acceptable.
8 Biting can cause discomfort, can use your observations to this end: near or with others. They might not angry feelings, and on occasion serious know how to share, take turns, or injury. Other children may begin to If your child seems to bite when communicate their wishes or make negative comments about ( , frustrated: interests. he's mean ) or avoid playing with You can say, You are so frustrated. Cause and effect Toddlers might children who frequently bite. Social You want that toy. Teach your child bite to see the effect it has on reactions such as these can be very simple words such as mine or others.
9 They learn quickly that it harmful to a child's relationships with no. Teach some basic sign gets a BIG reaction and has a major other children and his feelings about language or gestures for things like Sean Locke impact from both the children they himself. help or stop.. bite and the adults who witness it. The Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning Vanderbilt University If your child seems to bite because he/she is overwhelmed If you think your child might be biting for oral stimulation: What Can You Do in the Moment by playing near or with others: Offer crunchy healthy foods When Your Child Bites?
10 Join your child in play by sitting on such as crackers, rice cakes, or the floor and coaching him/her in pretzels at snack intervals 1 Quickly yet calmly remove your play. Your child might need help to throughout the day. Or, provide child from the person he has bitten. understand other children's ideas. appropriate and interesting items Calmly ( without yelling or He/she might also need guidance to for your child to chew on ( , scolding), clearly, and firmly say, learn and practice how to join play, teething toys). Stop. No biting. Biting hurts.. take turns, share, communicate Show and explain the effect of the If your child is biting because bite on the other child.