Breastfeeding & Biting! Minbie's Top Tips To Stop Bub Biting You!

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Ok Mumma's, prepare yourselves. We’re talking about…. biting! We know it makes you squirm, cringe, recoil and want to hide under the bed, but it’s important to understand why your little one is biting and how you can prevent it from happening at every feed. Yes, that’s right, there are some very simple changes you can make that will hamper bubs efforts to bite you whilst on the breast. New mum Annie began offering the Minbie to her baby River and found it improved his latch enormously, and put an end to the biting too!


The key to avoiding biting

The key to avoiding the dreaded bite, is to ensure your little one is latched correctly. When a baby is latched in the correct position their tongue naturally covers the lower gum (& teeth if they're through) so bub is unable to bite your breast without biting themselves in the process. Once bub is latched effectively, your nipple will be deep in their mouth, protected from the toe curling bite. 

When your little one starts cutting teeth the pain of biting becomes even more unbearable, hence it’s easy to understand why so many mothers give up trying to breastfeed altogether. However, help is at hand! The Minbie bottle feeding system can help you ‘tidy up’ bubs latch which will allow you to continue to breastfeed (teeth and all) for a good deal longer without the risk of a nibble every now and again.


Reasons your baby may be biting and how to overcome them

🤱🏻Positioning: Some babies bite due to bad positioning so it’s important to make sure you’re both comfortable, bub in the crook of your arm with a good deep latch. Being comfortable from the start means you’re less likely to be squirming, trying to get comfy which could affect the way bub latches on.
🤱🏻Shallow latch: If you notice your baby has a shallow latch, meaning they’re attached to your breast with mostly nipple in the mouth rather than plenty of areola breast tissue too, you're definitely going to feel as if bub is clamping down or biting you. (This is toe-curlingly painful)! If you’re struggling to get the latch nailed, chat to a lactation consultant or touch base with our customer service team for some top tips on effective latching. 
🤱🏻Nipple confusion: If you have tried offering a bottle to your baby that feels nothing like the breast when it's in the mouth, they can become confused. In this instance, bub may simply be chewing on you as they do on the bulbous generic teat that they’ve been enjoying. It’s important to offer your little one the Minbie bottle feeding system from the outset so you can avoid nipple confusion & lazy feeding, and prevent situations like this. The Minbie teat sits in your baby's mouth the same way your nipple does when properly latches, so there’s no confusion, no weakening of the latch or breast rejection. In fact, you may find bub’s latch gets better as the Minbie trains breastfeeding muscle memory whilst nurturing bub's instinctive latch. Read more about Nipple Confusion here.
🤱🏻Teething: If your baby is teething, they’ll be keen to chew down on anything and everything they can get their hands on. They don’t understand just how painful this is for you. Perhaps try soothing their gums before they feed with a cooled teether or a damp cloth out of the fridge.

🤱🏻Frustration: Bub may be finding the flow of your milk too slow and is biting because they are frustrated. Equally your flow may be too fast and bub’s finding it hard to keep up. If you think your little one is becoming frustrated due to a fast flow you can try using the Minbie breast pump to express some milk beforehand to make it easier for bub to latch and control the pace. If you think your flow is too slow, try offering a bottle of expressed breastmilk to see if that helps ease the frustration. (Our pump can help you increase your milk supply too, so it’s a handy tool to have in your repertoire.) 

🤱🏻Attention seeking & playing: Some older babies may bite to get a reaction out of you. Seeing you flailing around is a little bit of excitement for them. They don’t understand that their new teeth are like mini daggers, so it’s important you gently show bub that it hurts and don’t hop up and down screaming and shouting. (Some little ones have been known to refuse the breast altogether after being given a fright by mum's reaction to a bite.) Play it cool despite the excruciating pain you’ve just experienced, distract them, loosen their grip and gently tell them it hurts, before re latching. 

Biting doesn't have to mean the end of your breastfeeding journey. Using the Minbie bottle feeding system will help you and your little one remove biting from your routine so that you can continue to breastfeed unharmed. The Minbie teat will allow you to breast and bottle feed as it  nurtures bub's latch, ensuring more effective feeding, and ultimately helping to overcome that lazy 'bitey' latch we all want to avoid. 

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