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When Will He Stop Putting Everything In His Mouth?


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Wondered if there's anyone who could give me some advice about a little boy in our pre school setting?

 

He started with us in September and is now 2 years 9 months. He cannot stop putting things in his mouth - all toys (he loves cars), dice, stones, anything small in our tuf spot, - actually they don't have to be small, they're just the things we worry about him swallowing - paint brushes covered in paint - and today he has started licking wet paintings on the dryer.

 

He is also very into "kissing" the other children - on the body - he grabs them round the neck and goes in for a kiss with an open mouth which unfortunately sometimes turns into a bite. He has bitten staff as well but he is not doing this aggressively. We have trained the other children to say "No (name), I don't like that" and to get him to give us high fives instead of hugs, but some of the children are quite freaked out by him and it's causing problems with them coming in happily on days when he is there.

 

Mum knows about the biting - he also does it at home - and we are presuming it is just a stage he is going through, but we wondered if it was unusual for children to still be mouthing objects at his age?

 

He has a good vocabulary but is only using single words at a time - no sentences yet.

 

We have one member of staff detailed to follow him everywhere at the moment - just for everyone's protection!

 

Jo

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I'd say it is unusual for a child this age to be mouthing and licking objects to this extent.

 

Have a look at the section on sensory seeking behaviour on this page

 

http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.com...-checklist.html

 

If you recognise many of these tendencies then it may help to look for information and supporting children with sensory processing disorders. I'm not saying he's got it but you may do well to bear it in mind.

 

You can buy special chewy toys for children. If you Google sensory toys a few sites who sell them should come up. This may give him a more acceptable alternative for his needs to mouth things.

 

Quick edit to add that you might also want to Google pica which is a term for eating non nutritious substances.

Edited by Upsy Daisy
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You can buy special chewy toys for children. If you Google sensory toys a few sites who sell them should come up. This may give him a more acceptable alternative for his needs to mouth things.

Chewy tubes - we used them successfully with a child who was still putting everything in his mouth/chewing sleeves etc at four. We got quite good at saying "if you would like to chew would you like your chewy tube" and although his natural reaction was always to put something in his mouth, he did begin to understand that it wasn't appropriate to use his mouth to explore the world.

 

Maz

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