Biting and breastfeeding. Ready to give up.(7 Posts)
Anyone any advice on biting whilst breastfeeding. DS (8months) has naturally dropped to around 6 feeds a day but is biting me (hard- I'm bruised and have teeth marks) at least once a day, usually twice. Feeds are now really painful. I've tried removing him and giving a teether and then moved on to saying no, removing him and using my voice, facial expression, body language and physical distance but it's getting worse not better. He's not teething or in pain. There's no pattern to which feeds he bites at. I don't know what to do. It's been going on nearly a month now and I'm starting to dread feeds and I'm tense all through them.
DH is currently putting me to bed as he's just bitten me hard enough make me cry during bed time feed - usually his favourite and most relaxed. He's upstairs crying on daddy's shoulder whilst I'm downstairs. He had a good feed before biting me so I doubt he's still hungry. I just don't know what to do. He's a bottle refuser so a move to formula will be hard, but I think I'm there.
Ouch! That sounds tough, poor you. Is there a point at which you might have to drop some feeds soon anyway - ie are you returning to work imminently? If so, if I were you I'd be sorely (pun intended) to start dropping daytime feeds and keep morning and night, especially if nighttime is usually his favourite feed.
Yes, you could persevere, but 8 months is a long stretch and he'll be getting more and more of his nutrition from solids in the coming weeks and months anyway.
If you're in pain and dreading feeds then cutting down on feeds might be a gentler way forward. You could always step back up again if he stops the biting, or stop altogether if it becomes too much.
I picked up a tip which worked on both of mine. When they bite, don't try and unlatch. Instead, pull them in so their nose is buried in your breast and they have to unlatch in order to breathe. It's much faster than trying to unlatch with a finger and also they don't like it much. That combined with a few minutes break before offering more milk worked for me. I do remember putting dd1 by my feet on the bed and thinking 'go on, scream, but that bloody hurt and I need a minute'.
I would stop. 8 months is good going and by the time you cut down and stop he'll be on loud of solids anyway. You poor thing that sounds so sore.
Ugh I have so much sympathy for you. We went through this about 6 weeks ago. Biting every feed for a few weeks; nipples in shreds etc. I was gutted as we weren't ready to stop (at that point 11mo).
I just kept consistent with taking her off; saying 'no' sternly, making her wait a little before putting her back on, and slathering Lanisoh on at every opportunity. She eventually stopped and now bf is back on track.
Could you set yourself a deadline - like try to make it to the end of the week, for example...?
I was lucky to only get a few accidental bites, when my baby was half asleep and the like, but I do agree that at eight months it's perfectly acceptable to stop breastfeeding if you keep getting bitten.
If he will not take the bottle, try a sippy cup with an attractive design (or several until you find one that he likes, they come in several sizes and materials, with soft or hard spouts, straws, etc.). I do remember my baby biting the spout, so that may even provide a substitute and allow you to continue. There's no harm in trying.
This seems to be a very common problem around 8-10 months. It's awful, I sympathise. I second the suggestion about pulling him in to your breast when he has bitten you rather than pulling away and trying to unlatch. They only bite once they are finished feeding usually. I found I could watch DS really carefully and I could tell by how how jaw moved that he was about to get his teeth out. He is 20 months now and we're still breastfeeding. Biting hasn't happened since the terrible phase at 8 months.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.