Does your kid put everything in his or her mouth? I'll admit it, mine does. I thought it was just a phase as a baby, you know testing what is in the world around him. But it continues, Dylan is 3 years old, surely we have taught him what food is by now you say. We have! I promise! He knows what food and drink are, I'm pretty sure he knows that there is a difference between food and golf balls. I don't think he's necessarily hungry or thirsty when he puts something in his mouth either. Sometimes he's mad. For example, when he's hitting golf balls he likes to hit them off the tee, but sometimes it takes him a while to get the tee straight and the golf ball on it so he will stick his head down and bite the tee in frusteration. As painful as it is to watch him try and put the ball on the tee for five minutes (and no, he will not let anyone help him, he can do it himself thank-you-very-much) it's worse to watch him put his face down to the grass and bite the golf tee.
Here's a list of what has gone into his mouth (or he has licked) over the past week.
A golf tee
The railing at the baseball game we were at
A golf ball
Water from his sand and water table
His fingers, ALL THE TIME
Water from a squirt gun
A squirt gun
There is a lot of water on that list. Lest you think he is thirsty, this kid drinks a of lot of milk, water, juice, you get the picture. He doesn't seem to want to eat whatever he's putting in his mouth either, just bite it a little or lick it, maybe to see how it tastes? We tell him when he puts the stick/squirt gun/golf tee in his mouth that he should only put food in his mouth, but so far that doesn't seem to be working.
But you know what? For a gross as he is, this kid does not get sick (knocking on wood now). He has thrown up twice in his 3 years. And one time he threw up once and then was fine the rest of the day. So maybe he knows more than I do, maybe he's just building up his immunity. He goes to daycare and while they do a great job of keeping things clean, he's still exposed to lots of germs there too.
So maybe having the dirtiest mouth on the block isn't so bad.