Stop! Don't Eat That!
Mother & Baby India|November 2021
Almost every child goes through this phase. The one where everything tends to be introduced to her tongue or tastebuds, even if it’s not food! If you’re wondering how to stop your little one from shoving everything from shoelaces to soap into her mouth, M&B helps you understand why she does it and how to nip the habit in the bud...

Does your child find almost every bit of non-edible fallen item of plastic, metal or insect on the floor, irresistible to put in her mouth and decipher the flavour? While it’s true that teething might prolong a bit beyond 18 months for some children, you notice that this fascination is not just about strengthening the gums. Despite your repeated reprimands and explanations on hygiene and ill health, does your toddler continue her habitual consumption of everything she encounters on her daily crawl or baby walk?

It’s a typical grouse for most parents. Take, for example, homemaker Karen D’Souza whose 18-month-old son Jaden does the most peculiar thing. “He recognises what is dirt and is not supposed to be touched, yet he picks it up, says ‘kachra’ (garbage), sometimes even proceeds to the window to throw it out but ends up putting it into his mouth!” she says. An exasperated Karen says that constant vigilance is impossible as Jaden has found buttons, staple pins, solidified remains of food particles, fragments of plastic toys and even bugs irresistable! “Sometimes you open packets without realising that the thin metal pin has fallen off or that parts of a toy are beginning to chip off...” All she can do is to keep her house exceptionally clean and ensure that sharp objects are put away and footwear is kept outdoors.

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