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Help! Biting when breastfeeding! Don't want to end breastfeeding, but...

(9 Posts)
dibblesquibble Mon 08-Aug-05 21:28:25

DD (10 months this week), now down to 2 breastfeeds per day, first thing am, last thing at night. She's got 6 teeth (4 top front, 2 bottom front), which she's had for over two months, and - VERY occasionally, she nicks me when feeding. I say "ow!", which gives her a bit of a shock, her face usually crinkles (bit teary), but no recurrence of biting, and we settle down to feed again.

BUT - LAST NIGHT - she looked at me as she bit me! Hard! Then again! It was so painful, I yelped - she howled! I put her back on the breast, but same again! And again! I swopped over sides - I know she's got a tooth on the way - thought she was uncomfortable, but same again! I stopped, and she had a sip of formula from a beaker, then straight into bed. Morning feed today absolutely fine, but this evening she was biting me again - even worse! I even had DH standing by - he also thought she was doing it deliberately! It was the look on her face... Why on earth this is happening now, after all these months? The evening feed used to be so cosy and intimate - time for a cuddle. I'm so upset to think that this might be the end of breastfeeding her - am also worried about how quickly my milk supply will be affected...what can I do? Not ready to stop yet - but can't feed her like this!

weeboagie Mon 08-Aug-05 21:49:19

Same happened to me a few weeks ago - dd who is now 11 mths bit me and then just laughed at me when I scolded her. I put her back on the breast and she did it again - I used my scary mummy voice but she still laughed! This happened for a week or so and I was considering giving up breastfeeding when I found this tip on mumsnet.

When they bite - don't pull away (if you can) - just pinch their nose. They'll have to let go to breathe. After I'd done this a few times the bittng stopped and I can now have my snuggly night time feeds again.

loupylou Mon 08-Aug-05 22:05:15

Not sure how to stop this, but if bitten hug baby into you, blocking nose with breast and they let go to take breath. Perhaps, leave off for a few seconds. my dd used to make a funny face, before attempting to bite as she had to move her mouth slightly to do it, so maybe watch baby's expression carefully.

SamN Mon 08-Aug-05 22:06:33

There are some good suggestions here on kellymom.com about preventing and dealing with biting.

But I really sympathise - I went through this for about 2 weeks before ds2 stopped! I did everything suggested and he still kept on doing it. And at the time he wasn't putting on weight so I really wanted him to feed well and felt bad about putting away my breasts whenever he bit. Sometimes he would bawl his eyes out when I said 'ow!'

I think he only really stopped when his teething pain went away. But some things that seemed to help:
1) giving him a wooden spoon to bite on instead of me;
2) getting to know the signs before he started to bite and hovering with my little finger near his mouth so I could detach him before he did anything! If he wanted to carry on feeding I could always latch him on again.
3) on the bad days, giving him calpol about half an hour before bedtime to dull the pain a bit without giving him numb gums.

hth a little

bobbybob Mon 08-Aug-05 22:12:58

I had a three strikes and you are out rule at this age. Okay so we had a couple of night feeds because of this - but better that than being bit.

She can bite the beaker her formula comes in - she gets a better reaction if she bites you - it's part of the learning process.

collision Mon 08-Aug-05 22:20:49

I was going to post about this tonight!! Ds is 9 months with 6 teeth and it is Soooooo painful when he bites!! He is fine in the morning but the rest of the time he really gives a nasty nip. i will try holding his nose tomorrow and see what happens as I dont want to stop but it really hurts.

dibblesquibble Mon 08-Aug-05 23:02:18

Some helpful info - thanks so much! Yes, DD definitely gets a "look" on her face before biting! I will try a "nose pinch" tomorrow - though am getting stressed at thought of being bitten again - ow, ow, ow! It struck me that she was testing her Baby Boundaries - I am also curious as to why it's the night-time feed...am wondering if it's sore gums/teething at end of the day, OR - as she'll do anything to resist going to bed - can it possibly be that she's worked out that bed follows this feed, and she's trying to put it off?!! They are funny little pixies, aren't they?!

bobbybob Tue 09-Aug-05 07:03:21

Probably because she's tired at bedtime. I started feeding bob before his tea when the biting phase happened.

dibblesquibble Tue 09-Aug-05 08:20:48

So much for my "night-time" theory - got really badly bitten this morning - Fine on right hand side, swopped over to left and poor DD kept latching on with her teeth, couldn't get my fingers in to pinch her nose! She's asleep now, think I'll try again when she wakes. Was feeling so sad, but have just read the kellymom website info, and feel like I should be able to stop it if I persist...Now wishing I hadn't given my breast pump away - I think I'm finally going to have to learn how to express milk - yikes!

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