What To Do If Your Child Bites You While Breastfeeding?

~ Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 at 1:18 PM ~

I saw this question posted by one mummy in a breastfeeding group I joined in Facebook "After BF for 7 months, my LO started to bite my nipples. Not sure if it is the caused of teething but it is very painful for me to continue BF. How to stop that? I've tried telling her (not sure if she understands ^^) and putting my last finger at the side of her mouth to open when she bites but that only lasts a while. Any mommies encounter this before? Its supper painful that I'm afraid to let her latch on now."

My immediate reply was:

"Lightly smacks her mouth with 2-3 of your fingers, must look serious and tell her immediately 'Ouch! That hurts mummy!' Give her a few seconds to think what happen (withdraw your breasts at this point), little children are very smart! After a while they will make the connection that if they bite = mummy pain = no nen-nen (aka breastmilk)"

Another idea you may try is lightly insert your pinky finger into their mouth in order to open up their mouth, do your gentlest to pull out your nipple. I normally do this when our kiddos fell asleep while nursing.

**** NOTE: For those who thinks my tip of smacking = abuse, please note that I said 'Lightly smacks'. In this sense, you use 2-3 of your fingers and pat your child's mouth. Just annoys me when people read the word 'smack' and immediately screams abuse! Weirdos...

Smack, warning with serious face, give them few seconds to reflect what they did...

With Ben (he's 39 months old now), I only have to do the above twice, the second time was because I was slow and he was really really hungry and accidentally bit me. Since then, no more biting episodes, even now that he is still nursing from me once a day before bedtime, he remembers and knows the rules!

As for Alyson (she's 9 months old now), I had to do this so far about 3 times and as of today, she has never bit me anymore and she's growing her 4th tooth (upper) at the moment. The last time I smacked Alyson's mouth after she bit me REALLY hard (I can actually see her tooth marks - bottom 2 teeth), I was and actually looked at her angrily and I can immediately see her face turning from playful into shock, then remorse and then she started crying. I had to calm her down after that but since then and so far, no more biting episodes.

So yes, new mums, you have to be firm and serious in disciplining your breastfeeding child if you want to spare your nipples from anymore biting incident. You CANNOT scold and smile at your child at the same time. They will not be able to know that you are serious and meant that it hurts if you are smiling at them. Or immediately offered your breast back at them.

I hope the above tips help!

How about you? Any tips to add on that you can share?

I'm a full-time mummy

Comments (7) -


Erm, in my case, she bites but she's not biting hard instantly. She's increasing the 'hardness' slowly that you don't really feel that she's biting until its getting more and more painful.
Some how my gal is not scared even when we're really really really starn with her in loud and angry tone and I even smack her quite hard. Frown

Jenny @ I'm a full-time mummy

Hi Jani!
Wah, seems like your girl immune to your smacking! Hmm... how about grounding her off your breasts for some time? Unlatch and after scolding and telling her seriously that it hurts, tell her 'no more nen-nen now!' and then wait for a while?


ya, I did that. useless. she'll just goes away playing on her own. Frown

Cynful Pleasure

yes, I did that too.. so far she don't bite me anymore after so many years..hehe

Jenny @ I'm a full-time mummy

Hi Jani!
Aiyor... how to discipline like that?!

Hi Cynful Pleasure!
Good to hear that it works for you! Smile


yes, I'm wondering how could I discipline her. Biting is considered mild case here. She loves to grab hold of hair/skin which is really painful! Further more, she's holding on so hard that its hard to let her loosen the grab!  And she's not only doing it to me.
I smacked her hand many times and put her down and scold her and for once I got so angry and painful that I even dropped tears. ;(
But..... haiz......
take note that I never smack before this! Frown Frown

Jessie Hay

I've been breastfeeding for most of the last 21 years...and with the biting the best technique I have found is to simply take them straight off, say ''be gentle!'' then put them down alone and walk away. They soon learn that biting = no warm yummy breast and I've had success each time.
Another thing I have found invaluable is watching them, most of the time there is some warning that they are about to do it...and get in first and take them off! Of course for each baby it is different.
Hope this helps, just what has worked for me Smile

Comments are closed