mom cuddling with her babyMothers sometimes worry about breastfeeding when their baby has teeth. Most babies do not bite, but a few do. There are things moms can do to stop baby from biting.

It helps to know a little about how breastfeeding works. In order to suck, a baby needs to keep his tongue over his lower gum. This places the tongue between the teeth and the breast. Having the tongue over the gum stops the bite reflex. If the baby is latched properly, the nipple is deep in the mouth and protected from baby’s teeth. However, sometimes a baby may release the normal, deep latch and clamp down on the mother’s breast.
•    Some babies bite to reduce the flow of milk if it is too fast for them. Try leaning back while feeding. Putting the baby in more upright feeding position helps manage a fast milk flow. Avoid pressing on the baby’s head. This allows him to let go of the breast if he needs to take a breath.

•    Some older babies bite because their gums are sore from teething. Keep the gums clean with a soft baby toothbrush and plain water, or gauze moistened with cold water. This can reduce swelling and make baby feel better. Allow the baby to chew on a teething ring.

•    Sometimes babies bite because they are not really interested in feeding at that moment. Older babies sometimes bite at the end of the feeding when they get distracted or want to play. Wait until the baby really wants to eat and don’t encourage the baby to stay on if he grows restless.

•    Occasionally, a baby will bite if they are teething and receiving bottles…as they can bite on an artificial nipple without causing pain. When they try to do this with mother, her reaction may be surprising and confusing. Switching the baby to a sippee cup instead of a bottle may help.

Try to teach the baby not to clamp down on the breast before the teeth come in. If baby closes his gums on the breast, remove him from the breast and end the feeding for at least a few minutes. In a firm tone, say: “Don’t bite.” Some mothers also follow, in a gentler tone, with “Gentle with mom.” or “Open wide.” Babies are smart. They learn from the consequences of their actions. If clamping down on the breast means it is taken away, most babies will stop clamping. If your baby bites, keep a finger ready to remove baby if he clamps down on the breast. Some mothers briefly pull the baby in close to block his nose. This will cause him to open his mouth to breathe, allowing mom to safely unlatch him.

If baby does bite, and mom reacts strongly, some sensitive babies might refuse to breastfeed for a little while. This ‘nursing strike’ can be overcome with patience. .

An IBCLC or LLL Leader can help determine the reason a baby is biting and help you teach your baby not to bite.

More on Baby Biting Tips

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Baby SleepingWhen you have a new baby, you may be wondering how to take care of that beautiful and fragile skin. Babies have skin that is very thin and sensitive, and it is much different from the skin of adults. No doubt you love the feel of a baby's smooth skin, but you probably don't realize the care that it takes to keep your baby's skin this way. A variety of skin conditions can occur in babies and some skin care products may help, while others may make things worse. Here is a look at some important information and great tips that every new parent can use when it comes to baby skin care.

Common Skin Conditions in Babies

Since babies have skin that is so sensitive, they often develop different skin conditions. You may not know what these conditions are or how to treat them. Here is a look at some of the common skin conditions in babies and some tips on how to deal with these conditions.

- Baby Acne – One common skin condition babies often develop is baby acne. This usually looks like little pink spots on their skin, usually on their face. Because of the hormones from their mother, often the acne occurs but will probably go away without any special care.

- Chafing - Sometimes chafing can occur when there is friction between skin and clothing or where skin rubs together. Avoid tight clothing to prevent this problem and put on cornstarch baby powder to help keep chafing from occurring.

- Heat Rash – You may notice some small pink spots all over the body of your baby. A lot of humidity and heat can cause this. Keep your baby in loose clothing and avoid keeping them in areas that are too warm to help with this problem.

- Eczema – Symptoms of eczema include skin that is scaly, irritated, and red. You need to keep skin clean and dry, and you'll probably want to discuss this with your pediatrician. Babies with eczema usually need to use products that are designed for sensitive skin.

- Cradle Cap - This skin problem includes patches that are very crusty on your baby's scalp. Glands that are overactive can cause this. To treat the problem, apply a bit of baby oil to soften it. Then shampoo the hair and use a comb or baby brush to gently remove the cradle cap.

Common Skin Care Products for Babies – What You Should Know

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laughing baby playing with motherDr. Caron B. Goode

The bonding period for you and your baby begins long before birth.  As your baby grows and develops within you, the special relationship between you and your child is already beginning to form. This special relationship, full of intense emotion, a deep sense of connection and a strong attachment is what drives a mother to feed her baby in the middle of the night or comfort her when she’s crying. This same bond waters the roots of trust and open communication with your baby and teaches him or her that she is loved, valued and respected.

While some new moms may feel instantly attached to their babies immediately following their birth, other moms need a bit more time to adjust to their new role and physically, emotionally and hormonally recover from their birthing experience.

Wherever you are on your bonding journey, it’s important to know that bonding is a process and not an end result. Each day you respond to your baby’s needs, gaze into her eyes, or shower her with your love and affection, your bond is growing deeper, wider and more intense.

As you learn to interact with your baby, use these 20 tips that can you grow your bond with your baby.

Bonding with Your Baby

1) Bond through Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding promotes closeness between a mother and baby. When you breastfeed your baby you’re guaranteed to hold your baby close 8 to 18 times per day. If you’re able, consider breastfeeding your baby.

2) Bond through Touch

Your baby will respond to the warmth of your touch. Skin to skin contact will also help your baby feel secure, stay warm and promote bonding. Lay your baby against your chest and cover your baby with a lightweight blanket.

3) Bond through Eye Contact

Your baby will gaze into your eyes for hours. Your newborn will typically see you best when your face is about one foot away from her body. When feeding your baby, make faces, smile and look into your baby’s eyes to promote bonding.

4) Bond through Sounds

Your baby loves your voice. Sing and talk to your baby often. Your voice is a familiar sound to your baby and your baby will feel comforted by hearing you sing or speak. Your baby will also be soothed if you lay him on your chest with his head near your heart. The familiar sound of your heartbeat will relax your baby.More on 20 Tips for Bonding with Your Baby

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by Jennifer Shakeel

mother comforting crying babyAll babies cry, but two out of every ten babies will be affected by colic. Colic is an inconsolable crying in an otherwise healthy baby that has bouts of fussiness and irritability. While the condition is completely harmless to the baby, it can make parents want to pull their hair out or start crying themselves.

Colic usually happens in the first few weeks of life of the baby and can last until they are four months old. The crying is often intense and absolutely furious and it can last for hours or days. This is crying that doesn’t stop with feeding, burping, rocking or anything. If your baby has colic it will be worse in the afternoon or evening then it is in the morning.

What you need to know is that your baby is not in pain, though he or she looks like they are in pain. Their belly does not hurt; though it will feel tight understand that is because they are screaming. Think about when you are crying, or stressed your stomach feels tight, and you have problems eating, sleeping and going to the bathroom. It isn’t any different for baby.

The main problem with the condition is the stress and anxiety it creates at home, especially if it's your first child. You may find being unable to comfort your new baby stressful, as well as finding it difficult to cope with the constant crying, so it's important for you to have support and to take a break if things get on top of you.

More on Baby Colic – Causes and Treatment

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two-babies-talkingAs a parent, it is important to learn the baby language milestones that your child will experience as they grow. The milestones that you will be introduced to in this guide have been established based on numerous tests conducted on a large number of babies. It is important that you remember that each child develops speech at their own rate. While many children will experience these milestones as expected by medical professionals, not all children will learn at the same pace. However, it is a good idea to at least be aware of the most common milestones so that you know what is to come and will know when to seek assistance. Here, you will be introduced to several baby language milestones.

Speech Development: Birth to Three Months

Communication is more than just talking. It also includes the ability to hear and understand the things that are being said. From the time that a child is born to three months of age, there are many baby language milestones that are experienced. It is quite common for a baby to make noises that display that they are experiencing pleasure. The sounds may include "cooing", for example. In addition to this, the child will cry when they need their needs met. Many children will learn to recognize the voices of those around them during this early stage of life. In some cases, smiling is even observed on a child. When the baby hears noises, they may suck their pacifiers or bottles more quickly or more slowly. In addition to this, they may even become startled at certain noises.

Four to Six Months of Age

When a baby reaches four to six months of age, you will notice that they start to move their eyes when they hear a sound. They will actually make an attempt to look toward the sound. You may also hear them make sounds as if they are babbling. Many parents notice that their children will respond to changes that occur with the voice – such as tone changes. When a child this age experiences emotions such as pleasure, and even annoyance, they will begin to verbally express it. When music is played or when the television is on, many babies will respond to the sounds. It is at this stage of life that many children will pay attention to noises that are emitted from the toys that they play with.More on Baby Language Milestones and Speech Development

What is Baby Sign Language?

Baby Sign Language for please

Baby Sign Language is a collection of signs to assist parents/carers and educators, in facilitating early communication with their pre-verbal babies. It is also a wonderful tool used to help motivate children with their learning of literacy and mathematics. Baby Sign Language is exposing your child to gestures or the vocabulary of a second language, such as ASL.

Baby Sign Language is easy to use with no prior signing knowledge or experience. You are probably already exposing your child to some proper signs, without even realizing it.

 Why should I sign to my baby?More on Baby Sign Language In Your Home