This article explains why toddlers bite, ways to prevent biting, how to respond, and when to seek additional help.
Most biting occurs between the ages of thirteen and thirty months and usually stops around age three.
Biting is common for many toddlers. They may bite because it feels good on their teething gums or as a way to express an emotion they are feeling. Feeling over-tired, being over stimulated by their environment, or needing physical activity may contribute to more frequent biting. Most biting occurs between the ages of thirteen and thirty months and usually stops around age three.
Zero to Three, a national leader in the field of infant and toddler development, recommends that parents avoid calling or even thinking of their child as a “biter.” Words have power and labeling at any age can escalate unwanted behaviors in children. Instead, focus on the behavior and what you can do to deescalate, and ultimately eliminate, biting. When your child bites, take a deep breath and get your emotions under control before addressing the behavior. Always let your children know it is not okay to bite and explain that biting hurts. Be on the lookout for cues that your child is going to bite and try and redirect your child before biting occurs.