What to do if your child’s a victim of biting

Tots have lots of unsociable habits and biting can be one of them. But what should you do if your little one’s the victim?

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How to treat a bite

If the teeth have drawn blood, stop the bleeding by applying pressure to the area. If your toddler arrives home with a bite mark it’s likely to bruise so apply an ice pack to reduce the swelling. Some toddlers will bruise more easily than others but it should clear up in about 10 days.

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How to stop it

It’s impossible for your toddler to predict when another toddler might launch in for a quick chomp so if he’s bitten once or twice try not to worry too much. If he does get bitten or comes home from nursery with bite marks, talk to the staff, who’ll look into how to stop it. Although you’ll find it upsetting, your little one won’t remember it later on.

How to stop him biting back

Never encourage your toddler to bite back as this will only lead to a battle. “If you empathise with the bitten toddler he’ll be much less likely to want to take revenge anyway,” says Camilla McGill, co-founder of The Parent Practice. Also give him lots of love so he doesn’t feel that he was bitten because he isn’t liked by other people.

How to approach the biter’s mum

If it happens at nursery it’s better to let the nursery staff approach the mum, but if she doesn’t know, it might be a good idea to tell her yourself – tactfully. “Remember children are learning about right and wrong and you are there to teach them so it’s much more effective if you don’t judge other parents, and understand that one day it could be your own child who’s doing the biting,” says Camilla.

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What to do if your child’s the biter

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