How to stop Biting behaviour in my kid-Instructions
Biting is a normal behavior in children younger than 3 years. Children younger than 1 year may bite:
- To explore the world through the sense of touch and taste.
- To ease the pain of teething.
- When they are hungry or tired.
Children between the ages of 1–3 may bite:
- To show they are angry, scared, frustrated, or bored.
- To get attention or gain control.
- Because they like how it feels to bite, taste, and chew.
- Because they see other children doing it.
- Because they want to see how others react to biting.
Biting could be a sign of a behavioral problem in children older than 3 years.
How do I stop the behavior?
When your child bites, follow these tips to help stop the behavior:
- Write down when, why, and who your child bites. Identifying the most common cause of biting is the first step in stopping biting.
- If a
child bites when:
- Hungry or tired, keep the child on a regular sleeping and eating schedule.
- Teething, give him or her a teething toy or a teething ring.
- Fighting over a toy, get more toys and help the children play together. Understanding how to share and take turns is hard for children. These skills take time to learn.
- Angry or frustrated, help your child learn words to say how he or she feels. Words can take the place of biting.
- Bored, try to provide your child with a variety of toys and activities.
- Wanting attention, spend more one-on-one time together.
- Wanting control, give your child more choices.
- Do notpunish your child for biting. Instead, tell the child that biting is not okay. Explain that it hurts others. Tell your child what to say or do instead of biting.
- Do notbite your child back to teach the child what it feels like to be bitten. This shows the child that people bite when they are angry.
- Talk to those who care for your child, including day care providers and preschool teachers. Make sure they know what makes your child more likely to bite. Ask them to use the same methods you use to stop the behavior.
What should I do if my child bites another child?
If your child bites another child, follow these tips:
- Do notyell or make angry gestures. A big reaction can make the child want to bite again. Try to stay calm.
- Quickly separate the children.
- Let your child see you comfort the child who was bitten. Or, if your child is older than 2, have your child help comfort the child who was bitten. Being gentle can help teach a child to feel for others.
- Help your child label the feelings that may have caused him or her to bite.
- Try to explain that when your child is mad, it is okay to talk to an adult about it, but it is not okay to bite another child. Speak in short and clear sentences. It is best to use the words “okay” and “not okay” when talking to your child about biting.
How do I treat a bite?
To treat a bite, first check to see if the bite broke the skin. If it did not, wash the skin with soap and water. If the bite broke the skin:
- Gently wash the skin with a mild soap.
- Rinse the skin for 3–5 minutes.
- Apply a mild antiseptic.
- Apply a bandage (dressing). If the wound is bleeding, apply pressure over the dressing using a dry cloth.
- Ask your health care provider if your child needs an immunizations, such as a tetanus or hepatitis B shot.
When should I seek medical care?
Seek medical care if:
- You cannot control your child’s biting.
- Your child is still biting after the age of 3.
- The bite breaks the skin.
When should I seek immediate medical care?
Seek immediate medical care if:
- You feel that your child is a danger to himself or herself or to someone else.
- A bite wound gets red, gets swollen, or has pus coming out of it.