Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Observant, Jewish and Very Crunchy in China
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my DD does this too, but only when latching on while nearly completely asleep, or if she's extremely hungry. I've found that if I can remember to say "gentle nursies" right as she latches on, it helps 90% of the time. The times she has still latched down too hard, I say quite seriously, but not loudly, with a little frown "no, no bite that hurts mommy".
With us, I started right as the behavior started, and so this was mostly successful. With a more ingrained pattern, it would of course be harder.
In general, I would try to be honest about how much each time hurts you. (Unless he already treats it as a game) I think I yelled out "AHGH" a couple of times when it REALLY hurt, and she was so startled that she pulled off--once she even started crying.
Assuming he is truly unaware-- Consistent reminding should help him be more mindful. He is old enough to be learning. He just needs some feedback to realize what his body feels like when it's a good latch for you, and when it's not. Of course, smile and connect with him whenever there are improvements.
Liora. Best way to reach me is FACEBOOK, search for "LioraP2". Jewish and Frum In Beijing, Mom of Three (mother of 3: #1 was vaccine injured at age 2m later dx with PDD-NOS, healed in 3 years with biomed. #2 unvaxed and healthy boy. #3 unvaxed amazing girl with Down syndrome using Targeted Nutritional Intervention (TNI) since infancy)