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My 3.7 year old son bites other kids at daycare (and sometimes us) when he doesn't get what he wants. His speech skill is well developed. He is a happy, social and healthy boy otherwise. We are also happy and calm parents living together. He is the only child and gets all the love, attention and kisses and hugs. He has been biting for a year now on and off.

At daycare, they take action and interfere when it happens by stopping him and removing him from the scene, talking to him asking him to say sorry to the victim. We also do lots of talking and teaching him to use his words and get help from educators. It seems none of these strategies is working. Please share if you had the same experience and any solution you think might work. Thanks heaps.

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  • If he is sent to daycare against his will, he may not know any other way to voice his disagreement. Commented Dec 24, 2023 at 2:15
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    He has been biting for a year now on and off. How long were the "on" and "off" periods? Did you notice anything that seemed to trigger him stopping/restarting? Commented Dec 25, 2023 at 16:03

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I would recommend to reach out to a professional about this. Maybe your pediatrician can recommend someone.

While biting is normal behavior for 2-4 year olds, it's concerning since it's been going on for so long.

I'm also being cautious because your question doesn't include how often he bites and how long he goes in between "biting" and "non-biting" phases.

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It's not uncommon for toddlers to express frustration through biting. Consistency is key in addressing this behavior. Along with daycare's approach, consider reinforcing positive behavior with praise when he uses words instead of biting. Additionally, observe if there's a pattern or trigger for the biting and address any underlying needs. Patience and reinforcement of positive communication can help gradually reduce this behavior.

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Soooo... there's no real penalty for biting? And you wonder why it continues?

Geez, you don't need a professional or doctor to figure this out. Kids hit and bite until they are disciplined not to.

Tell him if he bites again he'll get a spanking. That alone might scare him enough to not do it. If he does bite again, spank him. Then make him tell you why he got the spanking... make him associate the punishment with biting. You might have to repeat this one or two times, but there's a good chance the biting will stop pretty quick.

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